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Chemical and Physical Properties of Food

The Department conducts research focused on biologically active compounds such as phenolic acids, tannins, lignans, and catechins using HPLC, TLC, and capillary electrophoresis methods. The above mentioned methods are applied for plant materials. Phenolic compounds are purified using different methods of column chromatography and a semi-preparative HPLC and their chemical structure are elucidated. At the Department the antioxidant and antiradical activities of phenolic compounds of plant origin as well as the chelation of minerals by tannins are investigated using several chemical methods. Peptides of protein hydrolysates are analyzed by the chromatographic and electrophoretical methods.

In terms of physical properties the research concerns mainly analysis of relation: microstructure-physical properties-food quality. The subject of the studies is raw materials, intermediate products and ready foodstuffs of plant and animal origin. The effect of variability of genetically and technologically induced physical properties of raw materials and products are studied. A special emphasis is put on the methods employed for studying rheological properties, the results of which are confronted with the results of microstructure studies conducted with light and electron microscopes. The microphotographs are transformed into digits using Digital Image Analysis what makes possible objective and accurate description of relationships investigated.