Cinnamon Oil Nano-Droplets: Making and Testing Their Anti-Spoilage Powers

Greg Howard
24th January, 2024

Cinnamon Oil Nano-Droplets: Making and Testing Their Anti-Spoilage Powers

Image Source: Natural Science News, 2024

In the food industry, tiny droplets mixed into liquids—a process known as nanoemulsion—is used for various applications from improving food processing to delivering health-boosting nutrients, and even creating natural preservatives. Cinnamon essential oil (CEO) is a popular substance with several uses across the cosmetic, pharmaceutical, and food industries. However, integrating CEO into water-based food products is tricky because it's not stable for long, and it doesn't mix well with water. A recent study tackled this problem by creating a cinnamon essential oil nanoemulsion (CEONE) through a method called spontaneous emulsification. Besides being created with ease, this nanoemulsion was put to the test against a type of bacteria, Serratia rubidaea, known for forming a slimy layer, or biofilm, that can spoil emperor fish. This specific strain of bacteria was taken from an emperor fish that had gone bad. To identify the bacteria and confirm their identity, the researchers used a combination of standard techniques, including the examination of shape and cultural characteristics and genetic sequencing of its RNA. For the nanoemulsion formulation, the researchers crafted a mixture using water and a substance called Tween 20, which acts as a surfactant to help mix oil and water. They did this by finely tuning the interactions between the oil and water phases and controlling the size of the particles formed with the help of the surfactant. The optimal conditions were found to be a mixing speed of 750 rotations per minute and a ratio of one part CEO to three parts water. The end result was a stable nano-sized droplet with an average size of 204.8 nanometers, a uniformity measurement (polydispersity index) of 0.115, and an electrical charge (zeta potential) of -6.05 millivolts. Two advanced analysis methods, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and high-resolution liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HR-LCMS), showed that the CEO and its nanoemulsion contained specific chemical groups. These groups, particularly those akin to carboxyl, carbonyl, and phenols, are believed to give the CEO and the CEONE their ability to fight against bacteria and prevent biofilm formation. This development could potentially lead to broader applications of cinnamon oil in food preservation, by inhibiting the growth of bacteria that spoil food and form resistant layers of biofilm. The study demonstrates a successful approach to incorporating essential oils into aqueous food systems, potentially paving the way for more natural preservation techniques in the food industry.



Main Study

1) Spontaneous nanoemulsification of cinnamon essential oil: Formulation, characterization, and antibacterial and antibiofilm activity against fish spoilage caused by Serratia rubidaea BFMO8.

Published 22nd January, 2024

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