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24, chemin de Borde Rouge –Auzeville – CS52627
31326 Castanet Tolosan CEDEX - France

Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

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"KONjac STArch Novel assemblies and Technologies"

logo RFI
The KONSTANT project aims to create new combinations of starch, hydrocolloid and polyunsaturated fatty acids to enable the development of products with high nutritional value for people suffering from dysphagia.

People with dysphagia have difficulty initiating swallowing and propelling food into the esophagus. These problems may be linked to various pathologies, which do not exclusively concern the elderly but which are increasing due to the ageing of the population. These people often suffer from malnutrition problems and the development of foods specifically adapted to their swallowing and appetite loss problems is crucial for these patients. To enable this personalized nutrition, the enrichment of nutrients in the gel water used to maintain patient hydration is essential.

This project aims to enrich gelled waters with essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) while maintaining a smooth and homogeneous texture and ensuring physical and chemical stability of the formed product. In order to ensure the health benefits of PUFAs and to avoid the consumption of potentially toxic degradation products, it is necessary to protect them.

amylose complexes

Semi-crystalline structure of amylose complexes

The interest of the creation of protective assemblies of PUFAs by starch lies essentially in the possibilities of releasing molecules at the time of consumption of the product. Unfortunately, starch gels containing these complexes have a strong syneresis that limits their use.

The starch-konjac glucomannan system then represents an interesting alternative to constitute a basic matrix likely to stabilize the starch protection system of PUFAs. Indeed, the konjac is best known for slowing down or even eliminating the progressive expulsion of water from the gels to which it is added.

The characterization of the assemblies and the assessment of their physical and chemical stability will use different analytical techniques combined in a multi-scale approach from the macroscopic to the molecular level, in collaboration with the University of Sao Paulo.

The fate of amylose-lipid complexes will also be studied during in vitro digestion under dynamic conditions similar to those of the target populations within the BIA-ISD team, thanks to an original device developed at INRA that makes it possible to monitor different parameters during digestion in three compartments of the digestive tract: the stomach, the duodenum and the jejunum ileum part of the intestine.

The DIDGI device

The DIDGI® digester: a dynamic in vitro digestion device developed at INRA

  • Duration of the project: 18 months (Feb. 2019 – Jul. 2020)
  • Coordination: INRA BIA (project owner : P. Le Bail)
  • Academic partners:
    • INRA BIA
    • University of Sao Paulo (USP), Brazil
  • Budget: 92 000 € incl. 85 000 € from RFI