Grasas y Aceites, Vol 69, No 3 (2018)

Isolation of the unsaponifiable matter (squalene, phytosterols, tocopherols, γ-oryzanol and fatty alcohols) from a fatty acid distillate of rice bran oil

S. Sahu
School of Community Science and Technology, Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, India

M. Ghosh
School of Community Science and Technology, Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, India

D. K. Bhattacharyya
School of Community Science and Technology, Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, India


Rice bran oil is characterized by its unique composition of unsaponifiable matter such as oryzanol, squalene, sterols, tocopherols and fatty alcohols. Rice bran oil fatty acid distillate (RBOFAD) is an important by-product of physical refining plants. In the present study, an appropriate fractionation methodology is proposed for isolating the unsaponifiable matter into two fractions, squalene, phytosterols and fatty alcohols as fraction 1; tocopherols and γ- oryzanol as fraction 2. The two fractions together constitute the total unsaponifiable matter in the RBOFAD. The individual unsaponifiable matter components (γ-oryzanol 1.78g/100g, squalene 209.63 mg/100g, tocopherol 2.45mg/100g, total phytosterols 3.79g/100g and fatty alcohols 94.23g/100g) were isolated from RBOFAD by combining a chemical esterification process and liquid-liquid extraction process with 95% ethanol which extracted tocopherol, γ-oryzanol, sterols, squalene, FFA, monoglycerides; later with hexane extraction of the alkaline phase to remove squalene, sterols and fatty alcohols. The alkaline salts of tocopherols and γ-oryzanol are decomposed by the acidification and extraction of the unsaponifiable matter with n-hexane.


Esterification; Fatty Acid Distillate; Rice Bran Oil; Unsaponifiable matter

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