, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 257-263
Date: 18 Sep 2009

Comparison of gamma-aminobutyric acid production in Thai rice grains

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Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) has many pharmacological functions including being a major inhibitory neurotransmitter. Two comparative methods for GABA production in rice grains as main food source in Thailand were investigated in this study. Fermentation and germination method were separately carried out using seven selected local grain cultivars in northern Thailand. Red yeast rice, obtained from the fermentation method, gave the higher GABA concentration than the germinated rice produced from the germination method in most rice cultivars. The highest GABA concentration was 28.37 mg/g at 3 weeks fermentation time of glutinous rice, O. sativa L. cv. Sanpatong 1 cultivars, while germinated rice from glutinous rice; O. sativa L. cv. Korkor6 (RD6) cultivars contained the highest GABA concentration of 3.86 mg/g. These results provide information for the basis of an appropriate method for GABA production. The fermentation produced higher GABA concentration but required longer production period and red yeast rice was obtained as product. On the other hand, the germination method yielded rice grains with lower GABA but in more suitable form for consumption. Both methods are considered to be economical and efficient methods to increase GABA in rice grains, providing alternative products with higher nutritional values.