12 January - 20 June 2016

Bioinformatics approaches, prospects and challenges of food bioactive peptide research

16 December 2015

The availability of bioactive peptides in food sources is currently a topic of great interest, following recent reports of their health benefits. Although a field of great potential, there are also a large number of challenges surrounding the availability of peptides from food sources, as researchers in Canada have recently reported in a review article published in Trends in Food Science and Technology. Bioactive peptides comprise two or more amino acid residues and are typically made during breakdown of proteins by enzymes; this can happen during food processing, gastric digestion or during fermentation. However, lack of specificity during these processes makes prediction of the resulting bioactive peptides difficult; use of heat treatment during these processes can, in fact, lead to the production of peptides that could actually be harmful to human health. Traditional methods of bioactive peptide discovery build on pre-existing knowledge of proteins and enzymes to create databases of novel peptides, from which assessments can be made on bioavailability. In order to make the process more efficient, computer-based simulations have recently been applied to the search, which simultaneously evaluate multiple protein and enzyme systems. Once discovered, the commercialization of a bioactive peptide as a functional food ingredient can be another significant challenge; peptides can have a significant effect on the taste of a product and must be fully assessed for stability during digestion before conclusions can be made on their effectiveness. If successful, bioactive peptides used as a functional food ingredient could have significant health benefits in reducing conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and cancer.

share this article
RSSL endeavours to check the veracity of news stories cited in this free e-mail bulletin by referring to the primary source, but cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies in the articles so published. RSSL provides links to other World Wide Web sites as a convenience to users, but cannot be held responsible for the content or availability of these sites. This document may be copied and distributed provided the source is cited as RSSL's Food e-News and the information so distributed is not used for profit.

Previous editions

Load more editions

Make an Enquiry