Biotechnology Letters

, Volume 40, Issue 9–10, pp 1335–1341 | Cite as

Enhancing the production of phenolic compounds during barley germination by using chitooligosaccharides to improve the antioxidant capacity of malt

  • Xiaoyu Guo
  • Zhimin Yu
  • Meihui Zhang
  • Wenzhu Tang
  • Yumei Sun
  • Xianzhen LiEmail author
Original Research Paper



To enhance the production of phenolic compounds during barley germination using chitooligosaccharide as an elicitor to improve the antioxidant capacity of malt.


When used as an elicitor for barley germination, chitooligosaccharide with a molecular weight of 3 kDa, added at 10 mg/kg barley kernels during the first steeping cycle, led to the maximum production of phenolic compounds. Compared with the control with no chitooligosaccharide added to the steeping water, the total phenolic content was increased by 54.8%. Increases in the total phenolic content of the barley malt occurred when chitooligosaccharide was applied during the first or both the first and the second steeping cycles. Thus the antioxidant capacity of barley malt was increased significantly by adding chitooligosaccharide during the steeping process.


Applying chitooligosaccharides during the steeping process increased the content of phenolic compounds thus improving the antioxidant capacity of the barley malt.


Antioxidant capacity Barley Chitooligosaccharide Elicitor Malt Phenolic compound 



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31771907) and the Creative and Innovative Project for High-level Researchers of Dalian (2016RQ059).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Biological EngineeringDalian Polytechnic UniversityDalianPeople’s Republic of China

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