EXTRACTION OF Mucuna aterrima SEED OIL USING COMPRESSED PROPANE AND QUANTIFICATION OF L-DOPA IN THE DEFATTED MEAL
The aim of this study was to extract the oil of Mucuna seeds using compressed propane as the solvent, in order to concentrate the L-Dopa content of the defatted Mucuna meal. The experiments were performed in a laboratory-scale unit with a constant propane flow rate of around 0.8 mL/min and temperature and pressure ranges of 3060 °C and 80-120 bar, respectively. The results revealed that temperature is an important variable for the extraction yield obtained with propane. It was observed that the concentration of L-Dopa present in the defatted seed meal was greater than that in the seeds without the removal of oil. Quantitative analysis of the oil extracted under the different experimental conditions investigated showed no significant differences in terms of fatty acids (p>0.05), the major oil component being linoleic acid (omega-6), along with the presence of around 5% of linolenic acid (omega-3). The kinetics of the oil extraction with propane was also investigated for the operating conditions considered.
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