Analysis of erythritol in foods by polyclonal antibody-based indirect competitive ELISA
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Sugar alcohols are widely used as food additives and drug excipients. Erythritol (INS 968) is an important four-carbon sugar alcohol in the food industry. Erythritol occurs naturally in certain fruits, vegetables, and fermented foods. Currently, HPLC and GC methods are in use for the quantification of erythritol in natural/processed foods. However, an immunoassay for erythritol has not been developed so far. We have utilized affinity-purified erythritol-specific antibodies generated earlier  to develop an indirect competitive ELISA. With erythritol–BSA conjugate (54 mol/mol; 100 ng/well) as the coating antigen, a calibration curve was prepared using known amounts of standard meso-erythritol (0.1–100,000 ng) in the immunoassay. Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) and red wine were selected as the food sources containing meso-erythritol. The amount of meso-erythritol was calculated as 2.36 mg/100 g fresh weight of watermelon and 206.7 mg/L of red wine. The results obtained from the immunoassay are in close agreement with the reported values analyzed by HPLC and GC (22–24 mg/kg in watermelon and 130–300 mg/L in red wine). The recovery analyses showed that added amounts of meso-erythritol were recovered fairly accurately with recoveries of 86–105% (watermelon) and 85–93.3% (red wine). The method described here for erythritol is the first report of an immunoassay for a sugar alcohol.
Keywordsmeso-Erythritol Food additive Immunoassay Indirect competitive ELISA INS 968 Red wine Watermelon
We wish to thank Dr. V. Prakash, Director, CFTRI, Mysore, for his support, keen interest, and constant encouragement in this work. The research work was supported by Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi, (institutional project MLP-1407 to Y.P.V.), and senior research fellowship to K.S.
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