Green ultrasound-assisted extraction of carotenoids based on the bio-refinery concept using sunflower oil as an alternative solvent.Ultrason Sonochem. 2013 Jan; 20(1):12-8.US
A green, inexpensive and easy-to-use method for carotenoids extraction from fresh carrots assisted by ultrasound was designed in this work. Sunflower oil was applied as a substitute to organic solvents in this green ultrasound-assisted extraction (UAE): a process which is in line with green extraction and bio-refinery concepts. The processing procedure of this original UAE was first compared with conventional solvent extraction (CSE) using hexane as solvent. Moreover, the UAE optimal conditions for the subsequent comparison were optimized using response surface methodology (RSM) and ultra performance liquid chromatography--diode array detector--mass spectroscopy (UPLC-DAD-MS). The results showed that the UAE using sunflower as solvent has obtained its highest β-carotene yield (334.75 mg/l) in 20 min only, while CSE using hexane as solvent obtained a similar yield (321.35 mg/l) in 60 min. The green UAE performed under optimal extraction conditions (carrot to oil ratio of 2:10, ultrasonic intensity of 22.5 W cm(-2), temperature of 40 °C and sonication time of 20 min) gave the best yield of β-carotene.