Depletion interaction of casein micelles and an exocellular polysaccharide

R. Tuinier, E. ten Grotenhuis, C. Holt, P.A. Timmins, C.G. de Kruif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)
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Casein micelles become mutually attractive when an exocellular polysaccharide produced by Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris NIZO B40 (hereafter called EPS) is added to skim milk. The attraction can be explained as a depletion interaction between the casein micelles induced by the nonadsorbing EPS. We used three scattering techniques (small-angle neutron scattering, turbidity measurements, and dynamic light scattering) to measure the attraction. In order to connect the theory of depletion interaction with experiment, we calculated structure factors of hard spheres interacting by a depletion pair potential. Theoretical predictions and all the experiments showed that casein micelles became more attractive upon increasing the EPS concentration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)848-856
JournalPhysical Review E: Statistical, Physics, Plasmas, Fluids, and Related Interdisciplinary Topics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


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