The phenethylamine alkaloid hordenine, present in germinated barley, was identified recently as a functionally selective dopamine D2 receptor agonist contributing potentially to the rewarding effects of drinking beer. Here, it was shown that the hordenine precursor N-methyltyramine binds with a similar affinity to the dopamine D2 receptor as hordenine (Ki 31.3 µM) showing also selectivity towards the G protein-mediated pathway over the β-arrestin pathway. Using a newly developed UHPLC-ESI-MS/MS method to monitor beer production, we demonstrated that hordenine and N-methyltyramine were released continuously from barley malt during mashing and were stable during fermentation and conditioning. The amounts released from different base malt types were in a similar range but tended to be higher from caramel malts. Hordenine and N-methyltyramine concentrations in 24 types of beer varied between 1.05-6.32 and 0.59-4.61 mg/L, respectively. Thus, the human uptake of the alkaloids during beer consumption is in the low milligram range.
Keywords: Beer; Brewing; Dopamine D2 receptor agonist; Fermentation; Hordenine; Mashing; N-Methyltyramine.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.