Using Fruit Juices to Boost Health Benefits of Edible Bird's Nest

Greg Howard
23rd May, 2024

Using Fruit Juices to Boost Health Benefits of Edible Bird's Nest

Image Source: Natural Science News, 2024

Key Findings

  • Researchers from Nguyen Tat Thanh University found that enzymatic hydrolysis using fruit juices and commercial enzymes significantly improves the solubility and bioactivity of Edible Bird's Nest (EBN)
  • Pineapple juice and bromelain were the most effective, achieving the highest degree of protein breakdown and increasing soluble protein and free sialic acid content in EBN
  • EBN hydrolysates treated with fruit juices showed enhanced antioxidant, anti-tyrosinase activities, and improved wound healing compared to those treated with commercial enzymes
Edible Bird's Nest (EBN) is a highly prized delicacy, especially among the Chinese population, due to its numerous health benefits. Recent research from Nguyen Tat Thanh University has focused on enhancing the solubility and nutraceutical values of EBN through enzymatic hydrolysis using various fruit juices and commercial enzymes[1]. This study offers promising insights into the potential applications of EBN hydrolysates in functional food products. EBN is known for its bioactive properties, including anti-aging, antiviral, and skin-whitening effects[2][3][4]. However, the challenge lies in maximizing these benefits through improved solubility and bioavailability. The enzymatic hydrolysis process involves breaking down the proteins in EBN into smaller peptides, which can enhance their biological activity and solubility. The study explored the hydrolysis of EBN using papaya, pineapple, and cantaloupe juices, as well as two commercial enzymes, papain and bromelain. The degree of hydrolysis (DH) is a measure of the extent to which protein has been broken down into smaller peptides. The results revealed that pineapple juice and bromelain achieved the highest DH value of approximately 27%, followed by cantaloupe juice at 25%, and papaya juice and papain at 22% after 4 hours of treatment. The hydrolysis process significantly increased the protein solubility and free sialic acid content in EBN. Pineapple juice and bromelain treatment yielded the highest values, with an estimated 11 mg/mL of soluble protein and 18 g/kg of free sialic acid. Sialic acid is a key component contributing to the antioxidant and antiviral properties of EBN[3][4]. This finding aligns with previous studies that highlighted the role of sialic acid in EBN's bioactivity[3]. The antioxidant and anti-tyrosinase capacities of the EBN hydrolysates were also evaluated. The ABTS•+-scavenging, •OH-scavenging, and anti-tyrosinase activities were significantly higher in the hydrolysates treated with fruit juices compared to unhydrolyzed EBN. Pineapple juice hydrolysates showed the most potent activities, with IC50 values of 0.025, 0.045, and 0.190 mg/mL, respectively. These results are consistent with earlier findings that demonstrated the antioxidant and skin-whitening properties of EBN[3]. Interestingly, the study also found that the EBN hydrolysates produced by fruit juices remarkably enhanced wound closure in human fibroblasts by about 1.4-1.8 times after 24 hours of treatment. This property was less significant in the hydrolysates produced by commercial enzymes. This suggests that the natural components in fruit juices may play a crucial role in enhancing the biological activities of EBN hydrolysates. In summary, the enzymatic hydrolysis of EBN using fruit juices and commercial enzymes significantly improves its solubility and bioactivity. Pineapple juice and bromelain were particularly effective, producing hydrolysates with high protein solubility, free sialic acid content, and potent antioxidant and anti-tyrosinase activities. These findings provide a feasible method to hydrolyze EBN and apply the resultant hydrolysates in functional food products, potentially offering enhanced health benefits.



Main Study

1) Employing fruit juices to hydrolyze edible bird's nest and enhance the antioxidant, anti-tyrosinase, and wound-healing activities of the hydrolysates.

Published 30th May, 2024 (future Journal edition)

Related Studies

2) Edible Bird's Nest: The Functional Values of the Prized Animal-Based Bioproduct From Southeast Asia-A Review.

3) A Study on the Skin Whitening Activity of Digesta from Edible Bird's Nest: A Mucin Glycoprotein.

4) The expression of sialylated high-antennary N-glycans in edible bird's nest.

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