Enzymic dephosphorylation of bovine casein to improve acid clotting properties and digestibility for infant formula

J Dairy Res. 1989;56(3):381-90. doi: 10.1017/s0022029900028843.


To improve acid clotting properties, enzymic dephosphorylation of caseins with calf intestinal alkaline phosphatase (CAP) or potato acid phosphatase (PAP) was investigated. Greater dephosphorylation was achieved using alpha s1- or beta-casein as substrates, compared to whole casein or skim milk. Electrophoresis of PAP-modified caseins revealed bands with lower mobility and a multibanded pattern in the beta-casein region which was similar to that of human beta-casein. On the other hand, CAP modification produced electrophoretic bands having lower mobility of the beta-casein component, but with higher mobility in the alpha s1-casein component as well as increased net negative charge in the CAP-casein. PAP-casein formed a fine dispersion upon acidification to pH 4, with a microstructure similar to that of acidified human casein. Greater initial rates of hydrolysis by pepsin at pH 4 were observed for both CAP- and PAP-modified caseins, compared to bovine and human caseins. The rate and extent of hydrolysis remained high for CAP-casein but tended to level off with PAP-casein during sequential digestion with pepsin and pancreatin. There may be advantages in the use of partial dephosphorylation to improve acid clotting and digestibility properties of bovine casein for infant feeding.

MeSH terms

  • Acid Phosphatase*
  • Alkaline Phosphatase*
  • Animals
  • Caseins*
  • Cattle
  • Digestion*
  • Humans
  • Infant Food*
  • Phosphates*


  • Caseins
  • Phosphates
  • Alkaline Phosphatase
  • Acid Phosphatase