Monday, January 02, 2006

Natural Fruit Enzyme May Lessen Peanuts' Allergenic Punch

An apple a day keeps the doctor away?

Well, an enzyme naturally found in apples may at least hold the key to a less problematic peanut--which is great news for the more than one million Americans living with peanut allergies.

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists have discovered that the enzyme responsible for turning apples and other fruits brown when they're sliced also has the ability to reduce a peanut's allergenic potency.

About 1.5 million people in the United States and many others worldwide suffer from peanut allergies. Nut allergies, like other food allergies, can be life-threatening, so several ARS researchers have been on a quest to find a safer peanut.

Si-Yin Chung, with the agency's Southern Regional Research Center in New Orleans, La., discovered that the natural fruit enzyme called polyphenol oxidase--or PPO, for short--triggers an interesting chemical reaction when added to extracts from chopped-up peanuts.It's similar to what happens when a just-cut apple or banana turns brown.

The slicing action releases the PPO found in some of the fruit's tiny cells, allowing the enzyme to mix freely with compounds in the fruit's other cells. Add oxygen from surrounding air, and the result is oxidation--and a rather unappetizing, rust-colored apple.

Peanuts don't contain PPO, but when the enzyme is added to extracts from ground-up peanuts, it also sets off the oxidation process. This oxidation, which yields numerous volatile molecules, causes peanut proteins that were once independent and pure to link up in unusual ways.

The proteins that PPO affects are the same as those that provoke an allergic response in some people. So by shaking up the proteins\' original structure, the PPO enzyme is also altering their allergenic properties.Chung cautions that animal studies are needed to truly confirm the enzyme\'s effect on peanuts\' allergy-causing proteins.

He also plans to investigate whether or not PPO affects peanuts\' flavor and shelf life.ARS is the chief scientific research agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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AGRI-INFO/JANUARY 2, 2006


TITLE: NATURAL FRUIT ENZYME MAY LESSEN PEANUTS’ ALLERGENIC PUNCH


ALAM BA NINYO NA ANG MANSANAS AY MAITUTURING NA PANLABAN DIN SA EPEKTO NG ALLERGY SA TAO NG MANI.

NATUKLASAN NG MGA AGRI-EXPERT NA ANG ENZYME NA TAGLAY NG MANSANAS AY SIYANG RESPONSABLE KUNG BAKIT NAGIGING KULAY BROWN ANG APPLE AT IBA PANG PRUTAS KAPAG SILA AY GANAP NANG NA-SLICE.

ANG ENZYME NA ITO AY MERONG KAKAYANAN NA BAWASAN ANG EPEKTO NG ALLERGY NG MANI O ANG ALLERGENIC POTENCY NITO.

HINDI NAMAN MAITATANGGI NA MARAMING MAMAMAYAN ANG DUMARANAS NG PEANUT ALLERGIES SA BUONG MUNDO AT HINDI ITO BIRO LAMANG DAHIL SA MAY PAGKAKATAON NA NANGANGANIB ANG BUHAY NG TAONG TINATAMAAN NITO.

DAHIL DITO, SINALIKSIK NG MGA EKSPERTO ANG ISANG ENZYME NA TINAGURIANG POLYPHENOL OXIDASE O PPO, MERON ITONG KAKAYANAN NA MAG-TRIGGER NG CHEMICAL REACTION KAPAG IDINAGDAG SA EXTRACT SA NA-CHOP CHOP NA MANI.

ITO AY KATULAD NA NANGYAYARI KAPAG HINIWA MO ANG MANSANAS O SAGING KUNG SAAN AY MABILIS NA NAGIGING BROWN ANG KULAY NG PRUTAS, DAHIL SA ANG SLICING ACTION NITO AY SIYANG NAKAPAGPAPALABAS NG ENZYME PPO, AT NAGIGING MALAYA ITO NA SUMANIB SA IBA PANG COMPOUND NG PRUTAS.

ANG MANI AY WALANG TAGLAY NA PPO, NGUNIT KAPAG ANG ENZYME AY IDINAGDAG SA NAGILING NA MANI, MAY KAKAYANAN DIN ITO PARA MAGKAROON NG OXIDATION PROCESS DAHILAN PARA MAWALANG BISA ANG ALLERGENIC PROPERTIES NG MANI SA TAO.

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