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Sweet and taste-modifying proteins: a review



Sweet and taste-modifying proteins: a review



Nutrition Research 16(9): 1619-1630



The search for non-carbohydrate sweeteners from natural sources has led to the discovery of many intensely sweet-tasting substances. The occurrence of sweet-tasting proteins such as thaumatin, monellin, mabinlin and pentadin in the pulp of fruits of various rain forest species has provided a new approach to the potential treatment of diabetes, obesity and other metabolic disorders. These proteins can also be used as low calorie sweeteners to enhance and modify the taste of existing foods. Thaumatin is currently commercially available as a sweetener, flavor enhancer, additive to pharmaceuticals, chewing gum and animal feeds. It can also be secreted extracellularly by genetic modification of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The taste-modifying proteins, miraculin and curculin, can be utilized in controlling the palatability of foods or in the development of new food products. This review discusses some properties of sweet and taste-modifying proteins discovered to date.

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Accession: 002973930

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DOI: 10.1016/0271-5317(96)00175-3


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