Studying the formation of Maillard reaction products and their inhibition by polyphenols w at Institut for Fødevarevidenskab - Københavns Universitet

MSc Project: Studying the formation of Maillard reaction products and their inhibition by polyphenols with fluorescence spectroscopy

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Designing and studying a milk-resembling system to understand the potential of fluorescence spectroscopy to follow the Maillard reaction development and its inhibition by polyphenols.


The formation of Maillard reaction (MR) products in milk and dairy products during production and storage is a well-known problem. Although fluorescence spectroscopy has often been used to follow the development of the MR, its application for this task is complex. This is partially due to the many different pathways that the reaction can follow, leading to a wide range of known and unknown chemical compounds. In addition, the intrinsic nature of the fluorescence signal can easily lead to misinterpretation of the results when problems such as inner filter effect and quenching of the signal are neglected.

This project aims at increasing the general understanding of the potential of fluorescence spectroscopy in following the MR development and its inhibition in a milk-resembling model system.

In the proposed project you will design and prepare a milk-resembling model system including a milk protein (casein, β-lactoglobulin and/or bovine serum albumin); a carbohydrate (for example glucose and/or galactose) and a polyphenol as potential inhibitor of the MR (such as epicatechin and/or epigallocatechin gallate) in relevant concentrations. The samples will then be heat treated and stored to generate MR products and will then be measured by fluorescence spectroscopy.

Contact person / supervisor:

Marta Bevilacqua ( and Marianne Nissen Lund (

Attention: When applying for this thesis, remember that there are specific regulations and requirements that needs to be met in order for you to include it as part of your education. For more information on criteria, please contact your local student advisor as outlined here Faculty student advisors (in Danish)

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