|Authors: ||C. Romero-Segura, R. García-Rodríguez, C. Sanz , A.G. Pérez|
|Keywords: ||Olea europaea, virgin olive oil, phenolics, β-glucosidase, peroxidase, polyphenol oxidase|
The demand for high quality virgin olive oil (VOO) may be attributed to its potential health benefits related to protection against cancer and cardiovascular diseases and also to its extraordinary organoleptic properties.
It is well established that phenolic compounds have a direct influence on both factors, as antioxidants they provide important nutritional benefits, and additionally, some of them are associated with the bitter and pungent sensory notes of the oil.
VOO phenolic profile may be affected by multiple preharvest and postharvest factors.
In this sense, though processing technology may severely affect VOO quality, it is clear that most quality attributes of the oil are determined by the chemical composition and biochemical status of the olive fruit.
Thus, the content of the main hydrophilic phenols found in VOO is closely related to the activity of enzymes hydrolyzing the main phenolic glycosides initially present in the olive tissue and the pool of enzymes, associated to the oxidative catabolism, acting both on those glycosides and on the derived hydrophilic phenols.
Management of VOO phenolic profile requires a deeper knowledge on the anabolic and catabolic enzymes features in the olive fruit and the activity pattern of these enzymes during the industrial process to obtain this product.
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