Peptides and amino acids generated during cocoa bean fermentation are the most important precursors for the development of cocoa aroma, however cocoa oligopeptide fraction is under-investigated. In this study, we perform a deep investigation of the presence of oligopeptides in unfermented, under fermented, and well-fermented cocoa beans from all of the main producing countries, with the aim to obtain a better definition of cocoa quality and a deeper comprehension of biochemical changes occurring during fermentation. Oligopeptides were determined by UPLC/ESI-MS and 35 low-molecular weight peptides were identified and subjected to semi-quantitative analysis. Results showed that fermented cocoas can be differentiated from unfermented cocoas by their possession of a higher total amount of oligopeptides and a lower ratio of vicilin to 21 kDa cocoa seed albumin peptides. A variability in the peptide pattern was observed also among well-fermented cocoa samples of different geographical origin, suggesting diversified proteolytic activities.

Influence of fermentation level and geographical origin on cocoa bean oligopeptide pattern

PRANDI, Barbara;
2016

Abstract

Peptides and amino acids generated during cocoa bean fermentation are the most important precursors for the development of cocoa aroma, however cocoa oligopeptide fraction is under-investigated. In this study, we perform a deep investigation of the presence of oligopeptides in unfermented, under fermented, and well-fermented cocoa beans from all of the main producing countries, with the aim to obtain a better definition of cocoa quality and a deeper comprehension of biochemical changes occurring during fermentation. Oligopeptides were determined by UPLC/ESI-MS and 35 low-molecular weight peptides were identified and subjected to semi-quantitative analysis. Results showed that fermented cocoas can be differentiated from unfermented cocoas by their possession of a higher total amount of oligopeptides and a lower ratio of vicilin to 21 kDa cocoa seed albumin peptides. A variability in the peptide pattern was observed also among well-fermented cocoa samples of different geographical origin, suggesting diversified proteolytic activities.
Cocoa beans; Fermentation level; Geographic origin; Oligopeptides; Food Science; Analytical Chemistry
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12078/1940
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