Concentration of polar MFGM lipids from buttermilk by microfiltration and supercritical fluid extraction

J. C. Astaire, R. Ward, J. B. German, R. Jiménez-Flores

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


Buttermilk contains the milk fat globule membrane (MFGM), a material that possesses many complex lipids that function as nutritionally valuable molecules. Milk-derived sphingolipids and phospholipids affect numerous cell functions, including regulating growth and development, molecular transport systems, stress responses, cross membrane trafficking, and absorption processes. We developed a two-step method to produce buttermilk derivative ingredients containing increased concentrations of the polar MFGM lipids by microfiltration and supercritical fluid extraction (SFE). These processes offer environmentally benign alternatives to conventional lipid fractionation methods that rely on toxic solvents. Firstly, using a ceramic tubular membrane with 0.8-μ pore size, we evaluated the cross flow microfiltration system that maximally concentrated the polar MFGM lipids using a 2n factorial design; the experimental factors were buttermilk source (fresh, or reconstituted from powder) and temperature (50°C, and 4°C). Secondly, a SFE process using supercritical carbon dioxide removed exclusively nonpolar lipid material from the microfiltered buttermilk product. Lipid analysis showed that after SFE, the product contained a significantly reduced concentration of nonpolar lipids, and a significantly increased concentration of polar lipids derived from the MFGM. Particle size analysis revealed an impact of SFE on the product structure. The efficiency of the SFE system using the microfiltration-processed powder was compared much more favorably to using buttermilk powder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2297-2307
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2003


  • Buttermilk
  • Microfiltration
  • Milk fat globule membrane
  • Supercritical fluid extraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • veterinary(all)
  • Food Science


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