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Plant-based protein mixtures for food

Educational level:Master thesis
Target group:MSc Food Innovation and Health
MSc Food Science and Technology
Main area:Ingredients and Dairy Technology
Project description:

Plant-based ingredients and food products are gaining an increased public interest due to the emerging vegetarian and vegan dietary trends. The food industry and consumers are looking for plant-based food ingredients or products with a high nutritional quality in terms of both macronutrients (e.g. proteins) and micronutrients (e.g. vitamins and minerals). Upon transitioning towards a plant-based diet, it is also important to ensure that food ingredients do not contain high quantities of anti-nutritional compounds that may adversely affect the nutritional quality. A high nutritional quality of food is especially important for “disposed” individuals such as elderly or ill patients within the healthcare system.

The aim of this MSc project is mainly to develop plant-based protein mixtures for food with a high nutritional quality and with a low content of anti-nutritional compounds. Ideally, the plant-based protein mixtures should possess a well-balanced amino acid (AA) profile and a protein digestibility that is comparable to that of animal-based protein sources such as dairy products and meat. The protein mixtures will be incorporated into various food product prototypes developed by an SME partner in the Danish food industry called "Planteslagterne", as part of a funded CPH-FOOD project. The food prototypes will be targeted for patients in the Danish hospital system, where the standard for nutritional quality is very high. The MSc project will include both theoretical work (e.g. literature review and calculations) and practical tasks (e.g. experiments and analyses). Protein quality will be assessed using different analytical techniques such as in vitro protein digestibility (IVPD), capillary electrophoresis (CE), SDS-PAGE, and LC-MS. Functionality studies will be conducted to assess important properties of the ingredient mixtures for their food application (e.g. water-binding capacity and protein solubility).

Keywords:Nutritional quality, Protein quality, Anti-nutritional compounds, Functionality, Food product prototypes
Supervisor(s): Marcel Skejovic Joehnke, René Lametsch
Last edited:25-11-2019