Eco-sustainable oilseed biorefinery: Integrating microwave with magnetic nanobiocatalysis

Sachin Talekar, R. Vijayraghavan, Amit Arora, Antonio F. Patti

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We introduce a recyclable and efficient enzymatic process by integration of microwave (MW) pretreatment followed by magnetic nanobiocatalysis for the green and sustainable oilseed biorefinery. The magnetic nanobiocatalyst was prepared by immobilizing protease onto iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles and characterized using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, field emission scanning electron microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. The optimized MW pretreatment (450 W for 4 min) of fresh waste pomegranate seeds (WPS) followed by the magnetic nanobiocatalyst treatment (protease dosage of 30 U g-1 DW of WPS, pH 7, and 45 °C for 10 h) recovered 17.8% of oil slightly less than the hexane-derived oil (18.6%) together with the protein (15.9%) and dietary fiber-rich (97%) solid residue as coproducts. However, the magnetic nanobiocatalyst without MW pretreatment of WPS recovered only 13.1% of oil and 11% of protein even after 16 h of reaction. Excellent thermal stability and magnetic separation enabled the reuse of the magnetic nanobiocatalyst for at least four cycles without compromising the oil, protein, and dietary fiber recovery and protease activity. Additionally, the fatty acid composition, punicic acid and phenolic content, antioxidant activity of oil, and fiber composition and functional properties (oil/water holding capacity, glucose absorption capacity, and glucose dialysis retardation index) of the dietary fiber-rich solid residue from each cycle were also similar.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2716-2725
Number of pages10
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 24 Feb 2020


  • Biorefinery
  • Enzyme immobilization
  • Green extraction
  • Magnetic nanoparticles
  • Microwave irradiation
  • Value-added product recovery

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