Digestive recovery of sulfur-methyl-L-methionine and its bioaccessibility in Kimchi cabbages using a simulated in vitro digestion model system

J Sci Food Agric. 2014 Jan 15;94(1):109-12. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.6205. Epub 2013 May 29.


Background: Sulfur-methyl-L-methionine (SMM) has been known to provide various biological functions such as radical scavenging effect, inhibition of adipocyte differentiation, and prevention of gastric mucosal damage. Kimchi cabbages are known to be a major food source providing SMM but its bioaccessibility has not been studied. The objective of current study was to determine both the digestive stability of SMM and the amount released from Kimchi cabbages under a simulated in vitro digestion model system.

Results: The in vitro digestion model system simulating a human gastrointestinal tract was carried out for measuring digestive recovery and bioaccessibility of SMM. SMM was quantified by using high-performance liquid chromatography with a fluorescence detector. Recovery of an SMM standard after digestion was 0.68 and 0.65% for fasted and fed conditions, respectively, indicating that the digestive stability of the SMM standard was not affected by dietary energy or co-ingested food matrix. The SMM standard was also significantly stable in acidic pH (P < 0.05). The bioaccessibility of SMM from Kimchi cabbages was measured under a fasted condition, resulted in 8.83, 14.71 and 10.88%, for salivary, gastric and small intestinal phases, respectively.

Conclusion: Results from our study suggest that SMM from Kimchi cabbages, a component of food sources, is more bioavailable than SMM by itself.

Keywords: HPLC; Kimchi cabbage; SMM; bioaccessibility; digestive recovery; in vitro digestion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biological Availability
  • Brassica / chemistry*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Digestion*
  • Drug Stability
  • Fasting
  • Fermentation
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Republic of Korea
  • Sulfur Compounds / metabolism
  • Sulfur Compounds / pharmacokinetics*
  • Vitamin U / metabolism
  • Vitamin U / pharmacokinetics*


  • Sulfur Compounds
  • Vitamin U