Food Chem 2013 Dec 25;141(3):2036-43. Epub 2013 May 25.
Laboratory of Food Technology and Leuven Food Science and Nutrition Research Centre (LFoRCe), Department of Microbial and Molecular Systems (M(2)S), KU Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 22, 3001 Leuven, Belgium.
An experimental approach, allowing us to understand the effect of natural structural barriers (cell walls, chromoplast substructures) on carotenoid bioaccessibility, was developed. Different fractions with different levels of carotenoid bio-encapsulation (carotenoid-enriched oil, chromoplasts, small cell clusters, and large cell clusters) were isolated from different types of carrots and tomatoes. An in vitro method was used to determine carotenoid bioaccessibility. In the present work, a significant decrease in carotenoid in vitro bioaccessibility could be observed with an increasing level of bio-encapsulation. Differences in cell wall material and chromoplast substructure between matrices influenced carotenoid release and inclusion in micelles. For carrots, cell walls and chromoplast substructure were important barriers for carotenoid bioaccessibility while, in tomatoes, the chromoplast substructure represented the most important barrier governing bioaccessibility. The highest increase in carotenoid bioaccessibility, for all matrices, was obtained after transferring carotenoids into the oil phase, a system lacking cell walls and chromoplast substructures that could hamper carotenoid release.