Antioxidant properties and encapsulation methods of astaxanthin: A review
Astaxanthin is a predominant carotenoid pigment and a highly efficient antioxidant affecting health benefits. It is primarily found in algae or bacterium organisms and is a kind of natural colorants found in marine organisms, including hard-shelled-aquatic animals such as crabs and shrimp, and fish such as salmon and sea bream. Astaxanthin comprises the conjugated double bonds within its structure, which lead to a cause of rising the activation energy from the singlet oxygen; therefore, the singlet oxygen is destroyed by auto-oxidation mechanism.
This demonstrates higher antioxidative capacity of astaxanthin compared with
β-carotene and vitamin E. However, the presence of light and oxygen causes astaxanthin degradation which affects low absorption rates in the human digestive system. Many encapsulation methods have been applied to enhance astaxanthin physical stability and bioavailability for medical and dietary uses. This review describes and compares various encapsulation methods used to astaxanthin. There are many typical methods for encapsulation that include nanoliposome, drying method, emulsification, coacervation and extrusion coating. In addition, encapsulation methods led to use for in vivo and in vitro studies were also discussed.
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