Plant Foods for Human Nutrition

, Volume 64, Issue 2, pp 86–93 | Cite as

Sunflower Protein Hydrolysates Reduce Cholesterol Micellar Solubility

  • Cristina Megías
  • Justo Pedroche
  • María del Mar Yust
  • Manuel Alaiz
  • Julio Girón-Calle
  • Francisco Millán
  • Javier VioqueEmail author
Original Paper


Plant protein hydrolysates are a source of bioactive peptides. There are peptides that decrease the micellar cholesterol solubility from bile acids and therefore may reduce in vivo cholesterol absorption. The presence of these peptides in sunflower protein hydrolysates has been studied. Sunflower protein hydrolysates produced with alcalase plus flavourzyme or with pepsin plus pancreatin inhibited in some degree the cholesterol incorporation to micelles. Protein hydrolysates generated after 30 min of hydrolysis with alcalase, and after 30 min of hydrolysis with pepsin, were the inhibitoriest of the cholesterol incorporation to micelles. The average amino acid hydrophobicity of inhibitory peptides in cholesterol micelles was higher than the observed in the corresponding protein hydrolysates. This high hydrophobicity probably favours their inclusion in the lipid micelles. In vivo, this inhibition may translate in a decrease of cholesterol absorption. Reported results show that a combination of different characteristics such as peptide size or hydrophobicity may be responsible of the inhibitory activity of generated peptides.


Sunflower Protein hydrolysate Bioactive peptides Cholesterol solubility 



This work was supported by research grants AGL 2004-03930 (F.M.) and AGL 2005-01120 (J.G.-C.) from the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, partially supported by FEDER funds from EU.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cristina Megías
    • 1
  • Justo Pedroche
    • 1
  • María del Mar Yust
    • 1
  • Manuel Alaiz
    • 1
  • Julio Girón-Calle
    • 1
  • Francisco Millán
    • 1
  • Javier Vioque
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Instituto de la Grasa (C.S.I.C.)SevillaSpain

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