Elucidation of Functional Groups in Pectin

  • Lundt, Inge (Project Manager)
  • Rosenbohm, Christoph (Project Participant)
  • Madsen, Robert (Project Participant)
  • Clausen, Mads Hartvig (Project Participant)
  • Christensen, Tove (Project Participant)
  • Mikkelsen, Jørn Dalgaard (Project Participant)

Project Details


Pectin is a polysaccharide found in many fruits such as appels and citrus fruits. Danisco-Cultor A/S has a dominating role for production of pectin as a functional food ingredient. In order to obtain better control of properties of pectin in existing applications or to add new application areas it is nessary to strengthen the the fundamental research of the molecular structure of pectin. Danisco-Cultor has obtained fundings (centerkontrakt) from the danish research councils to a collaboration with DTU (Department of Organic Chemistry and Department of Biotechnology) and Southern Universityof Denmark,Odense, for this purpose.
The current project aims at develope methods for esterification of raw-pectin (possibly for industrial uses), and smaller pectin-fragments, delivered by Danisco. Analytical tools for determining the degree of esteification has to be developped, including using NMR-spectroscopy. Other selective modifications of the carboxylic groups within pectin should be invesigated. The modified pectin(fragments) might induce different enzymatic degradation and thus lead to new properties of pectin.
Another part of the synthetic project, headed by associate professor Robert Madsen, aims at synthesise defined building bloks of smaller protected fragments of di-tri- and tetra-saccharides of the galacturonic acids, which is the monomeric carbohydrate building the core structure of pectin.This strategy would lead to the final goal, namely to prepare tailor-made smaller pectin fragments with specific structure/substitution pattern, used for evaluation of mass spectrometric analytical methods by other partners in the project.
Effective start/end date01/09/199931/08/2002