Immobilized biocatalysts for debittering citrus juices

  • From Spain
  • Responsive
  • Research Services and Capabilities

Summary of the technology

Researchers at the University of Burgos are developing a technology of immobilization of enzymes that reduces bitterness in citrus juices.


Details of the Technology Offer

New and innovative aspects

Conventional methods, to reduce the bitterness in citrus juices, involve not only the removal of the bitter compounds (naringin and limonin), but also bioactive components (organic acids, flavonoids, limonoids…) from the juice. In this regard, biotechnological methods, either isolated enzymes or whole cells, are an interesting alternative way to remove bitterness, without affecting the nutritional and healthy properties
(antioxidants…) of the processed juice. Furthermore, the technology of enzyme immobilization onto or into solid supports improves catalytic activity and resistance to denaturation, and the possibility of enzyme separation from reaction mixtures and/or the reuse and the ability to operate continuously.

Main advantages of its use

The use of soluble enzymes in citrus juice processing presents several advantages as such reaction specificity, mild operating conditions and without contaminant effects (green technology). Nevertheless, in spite of the unquestionable advantages, there exist a number of practical problems in the use of soluble enzymes in such as their inactivation at the acidic pH conditions or their high cost. Immobilizing the enzyme on solid supports allows the modification of its catalytic properties, higher stability, prevention of contamination of the processed product, the reuse of catalytic activity, and the possibility of processing in continuous.


Enzymes can be immobilized on various supports (ionic exchangers, polymers…) either by physical adsorption, covalent binding or entrapment.
Immobilization of enzymes is known to offer several advantages such as ease of separation from a reaction mixture and repeated use in continuous processes, enabling greater control over catalytic processes and process economics. Moreover, the use of an immobilized enzyme permits to greatly simplify the design of the reactor and the control of the reaction.


This technique is aimed at the Food sector, especially for those juice manufacturers.

Current development status

Device already developed and validated for industrialization.

Desired business relationship

Commercial Agreement, License Agreement, Technical Cooperation: further development; Technical Cooperation: testing new applications; Technical Cooperation: adaptation to specific needs.

Attached documents

Related Keywords

  • Agrofood Industry
  • Other
  • Food
  • pulp
  • debittering
  • citrus juices
  • biocatalysts


The aim of the The Technology Transfer Office (TTO) of the Univesidad de Burgos is to promote Innovation technology through the reseach results transfer and the conexions between the University and the new needs and requirements of the society - we are the link between the University and the Industry. Contact person: José Manuel López (


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