Biocompatible Polyelectrolyte Complex Nanoparticles from Lactoferrin and Pectin as Potential Vehicles for Antioxidative Curcumin

Jing Kun Yan, Wen Yi Qiu, Yao Yao Wang, Jianyong Wu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


Polyelectrolyte complex nanoparticles (PEC NPs) were fabricated via electrostatic interactions between positively charged heat-denatured lactoferrin (LF) particles and negatively charged pectin. The obtained PEC NPs were then utilized as curcumin carriers. PEC NPs were prepared by mixing 1.0 mg/mL solutions of heat-denatured LF and pectin at a mass ratio of 1:1 (w/w) in the absence of NaCl at pH 4.50. PEC NPs that were prepared under optimized conditions were spherical in shape with a particle size of ∼208 nm and zeta potential of ∼-32 mV. Hydrophobic curcumin was successfully encapsulated into LF/pectin PEC NPs with high encapsulation efficiency (∼85.3%) and loading content (∼13.4%). The in vitro controlled release and prominent antioxidant activities of curcumin from LF/pectin PEC NPs were observed. The present work provides a facile and fast method to synthesize nanoscale food-grade delivery systems for the improved water solubility, controlled release, and antioxidant activity of hydrophobic curcumin.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5720-5730
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Issue number28
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2017


  • antioxidant activity
  • controlled release
  • curcumin carriers
  • lactoferrin
  • pectin
  • polyelectrolyte complex nanoparticles
  • water solubility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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