Köln, Germany
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Raters M.,Food Chemistry Institute | Elsinghorst P.W.,ELFI Analytik GbR | Goetze S.,Food Chemistry Institute | Dingel A.,Food Chemistry Institute | Matissek R.,Food Chemistry Institute
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry | Year: 2015

A quick and selective analytical method was developed for the simultaneous quantitation of 2-methylimidazole, 4-methylimidazole, and 2-acetyl-4-(1,2,3,4-tetrahydroxybutyl)imidazole, which are known to be formed by Maillard reactions. The methodology reported here employs stable-isotope dilution analysis (SIDA) using 4-methylimidazole-d6 and [13C6]-2-acetyl-4-(1,2,3,4-tetrahydroxybutyl)imidazole as internal standards. It was successfully applied in a model assay to show that the addition of ammonium chloride during the manufacture of licorice promotes imidazole formation depending on the added amount of ammonium chloride without the well-known impact of present caramel food colorings. Furthermore, a monitoring assay of 29 caramel coloring-free licorice products showed that both 4-methylimidazole and 2-acetyl-4-(1,2,3,4-tetrahydroxybutyl)imidazole are endogenously generated in detectable quantities. None of the samples showed 2-methylimidazole levels above the limit of detection, 50 μg/kg. © 2015 American Chemical Society.

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