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Recovery of norbixin from a raw extraction solution of annatto pigments using colloidal gas aphrons (CGAs)

Alves, R.W., de Souza, A.A.U., de Souza, S.M.d.A.G.U. and Jauregi, P. (2006) Recovery of norbixin from a raw extraction solution of annatto pigments using colloidal gas aphrons (CGAs). Separation and Purification Technology, 48 (2). pp. 208-213. ISSN 1383-5866

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.seppur.2005.07.014


Annatto dyes are widely used in food and are finding increasing interest also for their application in the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industry. Bixin is the main pigment extracted from annatto seeds and accounts for 80% of the carotenoids in the outer coat of the seeds; norbixin being the water-soluble form of the bixin. Typically annatto dyes are extracted from the seeds by mechanical means or solutions of alkali, edible oil or organic solvents, or a combination of the two depending on the desired final product. In this work CGAs are investigated as an alternative separation method for the recovery of norbixin from a raw extraction solution of annatto pigments in KOH. A volume of CGAs generated from a cationic surfactant (CTAB) solution is mixed with a volume of annatto solution and when the mixture is allowed to settle it separates into the top aphron phase and the bottom liquid phase. Potassium norbixinate presented in the annatto solution will interact with the surfactant in the aphron phase, which results in the effective separation of norbixin. Recovery= 94% was achieved at a CTAB to norbixin molar ratio of 3.3. In addition a mechanism of separation is proposed here based on the separation results with the cationic surfactant and an anionic surfactant (bis-2-ethyl hexyl sulfosuccinate, AOT) and measurements of surfactant to norbixin ratio in the aphron phase; electrostatic interactions between the surfactant and norbixin molecules result in the fort-nation of a coloured complex and effective separation of norbixin. (c) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences
Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Soil Research Centre
ID Code:13582

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