Elucidating the role of low molecular weight peptides as Maillard reactant flavor precursors in chicken meat

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Zhou, Ruiyin
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Low molecular weight (MW) peptides (1KDa) may act as flavor precursors in the Maillard reaction and contribute to the overall aroma and flavor formation in meat. The contribution of carnosine, glutathione (GSH), and cystinylglycine (Cys-Gly) to meat flavor formation was examined in the model systems after heating at 180° C in the presence of ribose to mimic the meat roasting conditions and physiological concentrations at pH 6.3. The generated volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were extracted using two different solvent extraction methods and were analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Pyrazines and pyridines dominated the reaction mixtures containing carnosine, while the sulfur-containing VOCs were found in the model systems containing GSH and Cys-Gly. The GSH system generated cyclic polysulfides, which have not been previously reported in the Maillard reaction of peptides. These results suggest an active contribution of low MW peptides to the overall aroma and flavor formation in meat systems.
Maillard reaction, Meat flavor, aroma volatiles, Low molecular weight peptides