Modification of menhaden oil by enzymatic acidolysis to produce structured lipids: Optimization by response surface design in a packed bed reactor

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Structured lipids from menhaden oil were produced by enzymatic acidolysis in a packed bed reactor. Response surface methodology was applied to optimize the reaction. Lipozyme IM from Rhizomucor miehei lipase was the biocatalyst, and caprylic acid was the acyl donor. Parameters such as residence time, substrate molar ratio, and reaction temperature were included for the optimization. High incorporation of acyl donor and retention of high levels of eicosapentaenoic (EPA) and docosahexaenoic (DHA) acids in the original menhaden oil were obtained. Good quadratic models were obtained for the incorporation of caprylic acid and for the content of EPA plus DHA retained, by multiple regression with backward elimination. The coefficients of determination (R 2) for the two models were 0.91 and 0.87, respectively. The regression probabilities (P) were below 0.003 for both models. Also, the predicted values from the two models had linear relationships with the observed responses. All parameters studied had positive effects on the incorporation of caprylic acid, but only residence time and substrate molar ratio had negative effects on the content of EPA plus DHA retained. The optimal conditions generated from models were temperature =65°C, substrate molar ratio=4–5, and residence time=180–220 min. Incorporated caprylic acid did not replace DHA, but the content of EPA decreased somewhat with an increase in caprylic acid incorporation.