Pacific whiting frozen fillets as affected by postharvest processing and storage conditions

Food Chem. 2016 Jun 15:201:177-84. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2016.01.083. Epub 2016 Jan 21.


Whole fish and H&G (headed and gutted) fish were stored under refrigeration (<4 °C) for 0, 2, and 5 days and subsequently filleted and frozen at -18 °C and -80 °C. Frozen fillets were analyzed during 24 weeks of storage. The activity of trimethylamine-N-oxide demethylase (TMAOase) decreased more quickly at -18 °C than -80 °C. TMAOase reduction was distinctively noted at -18 °C storage. Formaldehyde (FA) induced by TMAOase increased at all treatments at -18 °C as frozen storage extended to 24 weeks, but it was near zero at -80 °C up to 12 weeks of storage. Textural toughening, low water retention ability, and low salt soluble protein resulted from the denaturation function of FA. A sudden decrease in surface hydrophobicity at 24 weeks, when stored at -18 °C, resulted from FA-induced unfolding and subsequent aggregation. FA concentration appeared to affect protein aggregations and textual toughening of fillets during frozen storage.

Keywords: Ascorbic acid (PubChem CID: 54670067); Denaturation; Dimethylamine (PubChem CID: 674); Ferrous chloride (PubChem CID: 24458); Formaldehyde; Formaldehyde, hydrate (PubChem CID: 22136924); Frozen storage; Pacific whiting fillet; Postharvest; TMAOase; Texture toughening; Trimethylamine hydrochloride (PubChem CID: 10313079); Trimethylamine oxide (PubChem CID: 1145); l-Cysteine (PubChem CID: 5862).

MeSH terms

  • Aldehyde-Lyases / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Food Handling*
  • Food Storage
  • Formaldehyde / analysis
  • Freezing
  • Gadiformes*
  • Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions
  • Protein Aggregates
  • Seafood / analysis*


  • Protein Aggregates
  • Formaldehyde
  • Aldehyde-Lyases
  • trimethylamine-oxide aldolase