Characterization of fatty acid profile by FFFS

  • Moeketsi P. Ntakatsane
  • Xiaoming Liu
  • Peng Zhou
  • Kebitsamang J. Mothibe
  • Gabriel O. Adegoke
  • William O. Odenya
Original Paper


The purpose of the study was to assess potential application of front face fluorescence spectroscopy as a rapid and non-destructive technique to discriminate between fats of animal and plant origin based on their fatty acid profiles, and to predict concentration of fatty acids from fluorescence spectra. Vitamin E emission spectra (300–500 nm) of butterfat and vegetable oil samples were recorded with excitation wavelength set at 295 nm. Fatty acid composition of the samples was determined by gas chromatography. Principal component analysis and partial least squares regression analysis were applied to the gas chromatography and fluorescence spectroscopy data. The butter-fats and vegetable oils were discriminated based on the total saturated and unsaturated fatty acids respectively. Tocopherols and tocotrienols accounted for the variability among various oils. A good prediction model was established with R 2 = 0.745–0.992 for saturated fatty acids. The unsaturated fatty acids were characterized by low coefficients of determination (R 2 < 0.339). The fatty acid profiles predicted from fluorescence spectra did not show significant difference to those determined by gas chromatography used as references. A good association was established between the two data tables. The study demonstrated great potential of front face fluorescence spectroscopy to rapidly discriminate between fats of animal and plant origin, and predict their saturated fatty acids composition, which could in turn be used for detection of milk fat adulteration with vegetable oil.


Characterization Prediction Butterfat Vegetable oil Fatty acid profile Fluorescence spectroscopy 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Moeketsi P. Ntakatsane
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiaoming Liu
    • 2
  • Peng Zhou
    • 2
  • Kebitsamang J. Mothibe
    • 2
    • 3
  • Gabriel O. Adegoke
    • 1
  • William O. Odenya
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Animal Science, Faculty of AgricultureNational University of LesothoLesothoSouth Africa
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology, School of Food Science and TechnologyJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina
  3. 3.Department of Nutrition, Faculty of Health ScienceNational University of LesothoLesothoSouth Africa

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