Valorisation de l'écorce d'érable rouge et d'érable à sucre : optimisation de la production d'extraits à l'eau chaude et caractérisation de leur potentiel antioxydant

Authors: Geoffroy, Thibaud
Advisor: Stevanovic-Janezic, TatjanaFortin, Yves
Abstract: Bark is a high-volume residue from the forest industry that is mostly incinerated for its calorific value. However, biorefineries are increasingly gaining importance by providing new alternatives, such as solvent extraction. As bark is usually rich in extractives susceptible to exhibit bioactivities, agro-food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries keep a close eye on such opportunities. This high diversity of bioactive natural compounds in extracts provides a valuable substitute to synthetic ingredients, currently losing popularity. Phenolic extractives associated to antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-cancer or anti-inflammatory activities have been found in red maple (Acer rubrum L.) and sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marsh.) bark. In addition to other promising extractives, these phenolic glycosides could be recovered using water. This non-toxic extraction solvent is usually privileged for human-health related applications. This thesis investigates the valorisation of red maple and sugar maple bark by recovery and antioxidant characterisation of their water-soluble extractives. First, the research was focused on hot-water extraction optimisation. By varying several parameters (particle size of bark, extraction temperature and duration, bark/solvent ratio), optimal values were determined in terms of extraction yield, phenolic content, antioxidant capacity and estimated energy consumption. From these results, a 250–500 μm particle size, 90°C temperature, 1 h duration and a 1/10 bark/water ratio were found relevant for a scale-up. Therefore, post-extraction treatments were investigated at semi-pilot scale aiming to produce dry extracts. Combining concentration (reverse osmosis, vacuum evaporation) and drying (spray-drying, freeze-drying) methods, treatments were evaluated based upon several response variables: extract recovery, antioxidant capacity, protein, phenolic and carbohydrate contents and power consumption induced by the operation units of the process. In regards to these variables, extracts from both maple species seemed more potent when processed using reverse osmosis, associated to spray-drying or freeze-drying. The higher potential in terms of antioxidant phenolics determined for the red maple bark extract obtained using reverse osmosis and freeze-drying led us to perform antioxidant screening on this extract. An approach based on in vitro DPPH radical scavenging test associated to HPLC separation allowed for a better understanding of radical scavenging mechanisms related to galloyl-glucitol derivatives from red maple. Autoxidation of these compounds tested individually was not observed when evaluated in a tertiary mixture or in the crude extract. This mixture/matrix effect helped us define the next step as a study focusing rather on the production of fractions than on the isolation of pure compounds. To this end, ultrafiltration was studied as a tool for extract fractionation. Thus, this last part of the project allowed us to explore different classes of compounds in both sugar and red maple (proteins, tannins), which have rarely been studied. Although preliminary, the obtained results indicated the similarities between the characteristics of tannins found in both species i.e. proanthocyanidins in comparable amounts. However, only the high molecular fraction form red maple bark extract seemed to contain substantial amounts of high-molecular-weight gallotannins. Supplementary analyses would be required to confirm this result. To conclude, this thesis provides solid information to promote the extraction of red and sugar maple bark at a commercial level. This work offers valuable findings and insights about extract production for application in foods, cosmetics or pharmaceutics. The results obtained help enhance the knowledge about maple bark phytochemicals. Yet, further studies would be required before creating a sustainable biorefinery project based on maple bark. Such investigations, including in vivo toxicity, activity testing, as well as studies about food enrichment using maple extracts are planned for the continuation of this research.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2018
Open Access Date: 23 May 2019
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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