The study of citrus-derived flavonoids as effective bitter taste inhibitors

Jiali Huang, Yu Jing Lu, Chenglong Guo, Shanshan Zuo, Jin Lin Zhou, Wing Leung Wong, Baohua Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The pericarp of citrus in rutaceae is rich in flavonoids that may possess diverse biological activities. Some citrus flavonoids have been used as natural bitterness inhibitors; however, many citrus flavonoid analogues that possess merit taste amelioration functions have not been reported with respect to utilization in food industry. RESULTS: The effects of 12 citrus flavonoids on the inhibition of the bitter taste of naringin, quinine hydrochloride and stevioside were evaluated both by a sensory panel and electronic tongue analysis. Among the flavonoid compounds evaluated, both neohesperidin dihydrochalcone (NHDC) and neodiosmin were identified to show an excellent bitterness inhibition effect on all three bitterness vehicles tested. The results of the electronic tongue evaluation also showed that the addition of neodiosmin, NHDC or hesperidin dihydrochalcone-7-o-glucoside (HDC-7-G) was able to reduce significantly the bitterness response value of quinine hydrochloride, which is consistent with the sensory panel evaluation. Structure–activity relationship analysis found that the 7-linked neohesperidosyloxy group in the A-ring of the citrus flavonoid skeleton has the best bitterness inhibition effect. In addition, a ternary mixture of NHDC, neodiosmin and naringin, and neodiosmin/β-cyclodextrin was formulated and it demonstrated, for the first time in the flavor improvement of citrus fruit wine, an enhancement of sweetness and a reduction of bitter taste. CONCLUSION: Twelve citrus flavonoids were found to inhibit the bitter taste of naringin, quinine hydrochloride and stevioside. With respect to the structure–activity relationship analysis, it was found that the 7-linked neohesperidosyloxy group in the A-ring of the citrus flavonoid skeleton possessed the best bitterness inhibition effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5163-5171
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Science of Food and Agriculture
Volume101
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021

Keywords

  • bitterness inhibitor
  • citrus-derived flavonoids
  • electronic tongue
  • natural additive
  • sensory evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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