RESEARCH ARTICLE


Encapsulation and Co-Precipitation Processes with Supercritical Fluids: Applications with Essential Oils



Ángel Martín, Salima Varona, Alexander Navarrete, María José Cocero*
High Pressure Processes Group. Department of Chemical Engineering and Environmental Technology. University of Valladolid Facultad de Ciencias, Prado de la Magdalena s/n 47011 Valladolid, Spain


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Creative Commons License
© 2009 Martín et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the High Pressure Processes Group. Department of Chemical Engineering and Environmental Technology. University of Valladolid Facultad de Ciencias, Prado de la Magdalena s/n 47011 Valladolid (Spain); Tel: +34 983423174; Fax: +34 983423013; E-mail: mjcocero@iq.uva.es


Abstract

Essential oils have important commercial applications as preservatives and flavours, and more recently as natural antimicrobial agents. These applications require a suitable formulation constituted by biodegradable compounds that protect the essential oil from degradation and evaporation at the same time that allows for a sustained release. Microcapsules of biopolymers loaded with essential oils meet these requirements. Such microcapsules can be prepared with different processes such as spray-drying, freeze-drying and coacervation, and supercritical fluids are an advantageous medium for this purpose. Some supercritical fluid-based precipitation processes have already been applied to produce these microcapsules. Amongst them, the results obtained with Particles from Gas Saturated Solutions (PGSS), PGSS-drying and Concentrated Powder Form (CPF) processes are particularly promising. Recent developments in the preparation of formulations with supercritical fluids include the preparation of liposomes and micelles, which can be suitable carriers for essential oils.

Keywords: Supercritical carbon dioxide, spray drying, emulsion, particles from gas saturated solutions, concentrated powder form, micelle, liposome.