European Food Research and Technology

, Volume 219, Issue 3, pp 205–210 | Cite as

High pressure treatment of dry-cured Iberian ham. Effect on radical formation, lipid oxidation and colour

  • Ana I. AndrésEmail author
  • Jens K. S. Møller
  • Christina E. Adamsen
  • Leif H. Skibsted
Original Paper


The effect of high-pressure treatment (200, 400, 600 and 800 MPa) on radical formation in solid samples of dry-cured Iberian ham and in ham slurries was evaluated using the spin-trapping technique and electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy. In addition, hexanal was, as a secondary lipid oxidation product, assessed by gas chromatography. The effect of pressure treatments on ESR signals determined in the spin-trapping assay following pressure treatment in solid samples of dry-cured Iberian ham was not statistically significant. However, the lowest level of pressure applied initiated radical formation and promoted lipid peroxidation, whereas intermediate to high levels of pressure seemed to promote further reaction and disappearance of free radicals. Pressure significantly affected hexanal content in the same way as seen for formation of free radicals. Regarding the slurries prepared from dry-cured ham, pressure significantly increased the tendency of radical formation as seen from the ESR signals and significantly increased the hexanal content. The different pattern between solid ham and ham slurries points toward an initiation mechanism associated with the membrane phospholipids for oxidation. In addition, surface colour (L*, a* and b* values and percent reflectance values) of non-pressurized and pressurized (200–800 MPa) dry-cured Iberian ham samples was assessed. Non-pressurized samples showed a higher lightness than pressurized samples, and redness significantly decreased with pressure treatment.


Dry-cured Iberian ham High pressure treatment Radical formation Hexanal Colour 



Ana Isabel Andrés Nieto is thankful to the Spanish Education and Culture Ministry for her grant (EX2003–0320). The authors are also grateful to Tina Kunst for her technical assistance.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana I. Andrés
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jens K. S. Møller
    • 2
  • Christina E. Adamsen
    • 2
  • Leif H. Skibsted
    • 2
  1. 1.Ciencia y Tecnología de los Alimentos, Escuela de Ingenierías AgrariasUniversidad de ExtremaduraBadajozSpain
  2. 2.Food Chemistry, Department of Dairy and Food ScienceRoyal Veterinary and Agricultural UniversityFrederiksberg CDenmark

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