Preparation and characterization of microencapsulated phytosterols for the formulation of functional foods: Scale up from laboratory to semi-technical production

Food Res Int. 2019 Feb:116:1274-1281. doi: 10.1016/j.foodres.2018.10.016. Epub 2018 Oct 6.


Phytosterols were microencapsulated by spray drying in a shell represented by WPI, inulin and chitosan at four different combinations through the formulation of aqueous suspensions. Moreover, two concentrations of Tween 80 (1.25% and 2.50% w/w) and two inlet temperatures (125 °C and 155 °C) were tested. The effect of the different experimental conditions on the process yield and on the microcapsules properties was evaluated. A significant effect of all variables on the microcapsule properties was found. Accordingly, the best performance, with the maximum loading capacity of 25%, was obtained by using only WPI as shell material, Tween 80 at 1.25% and inlet temperature of 155 °C. The process was successfully scaled-up from laboratory equipment to a semi-technical scale keeping the optimal shell formulation and process conditions.

Keywords: Aqueous suspensions; Functional foods; Microencapsulation; Phytosterols; Scale up; Spray dryer.

MeSH terms

  • Capsules / chemical synthesis*
  • Chitosan / chemistry
  • Desiccation / methods
  • Drug Compounding / methods*
  • Functional Food / analysis*
  • Inulin / chemistry
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Particle Size
  • Phytosterols / chemistry*
  • Phytosterols / pharmacology
  • Polysorbates
  • Suspensions / chemistry
  • Temperature
  • Whey Proteins / chemistry
  • Whey Proteins / isolation & purification


  • Capsules
  • Phytosterols
  • Polysorbates
  • Suspensions
  • Whey Proteins
  • Inulin
  • Chitosan