, Volume 21, Issue 5, pp 3623–3635 | Cite as

Emulsifying properties of an arabinoxylan–protein gum from distillers’ grains and the co-production of animal feed

  • Zhouyang Xiang
  • Renil Anthony
  • Yuki Tobimatsu
  • Troy Runge
Original Paper


In order to improve corn ethanol profitability and energy efficiency, a natural gum consisting of primarily arabinoxylan and crude protein (CP) was extracted from distillers’ grains (DG), a major byproduct from the dry grind corn ethanol production. DG was fractionated into an alkali-soluble gum fraction and an alkali-insoluble residue fraction by extracting with 1–5 % NaOH at 25–75 °C for 1–5 h. The extraction conditions, which significantly affect the yields and compositions of DG gum and residue, were statistically modeled to optimize yields and compositions. DG gum had 8–22 % CP, which could all be reduced to about 8 % by purification with bentonite clay. The isolated gums (purified and unpurified) were made into emulsifying agents, whereas residues were characterized as animal feed. The results demonstrated that the purification process affects the emulsifying properties of the DG gum-derived emulsifying agents. In parallel, the DG residue was found to have increased fiber digestibility and metabolizable energy compared to the original DG. An economic analysis determined that concurrent productions and utilizations of DG gum and DG residue could improve the cost and energy balance of the current corn ethanol process.


Alkaline extraction Animal feed Distillers’ grains Economic analysis Emulsifying property Gum 



Acid detergent fiber


Acid detergent insoluble crude protein


Crude protein


Distillers’ grains


Metabolizable energy


Neutral detergent fiber


Neutral detergent fiber digestibility



This work was supported by US Department of Agriculture, under contract USDA Critical Agricultural Material Grant (2013-38202-20400). GPC analyses were carried out at the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center with support from the funding from US Department of Energy, the Office of Science (BER DE-FC02-07ER64494). The authors would also like to give their appreciations to Dr. John Ralph and Dr. Ali Azarpira for GPC analyses, to Yi-cheng Wang and Dr. Sundaram Gunasekaran for FTIR and particle size analyses, and to Didion Milling Inc. for materials and valuable discussions.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (PDF 171 kb)
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Supplementary material 2 (PDF 186 kb)
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Supplementary material 3 (PDF 282 kb)
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Supplementary material 4 (PDF 417 kb)
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Supplementary material 5 (PDF 174 kb)
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Supplementary material 6 (PDF 174 kb)
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Supplementary material 7 (PDF 171 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhouyang Xiang
    • 1
  • Renil Anthony
    • 1
  • Yuki Tobimatsu
    • 2
    • 3
  • Troy Runge
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological Systems EngineeringUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA
  3. 3.Division of Forest and Biomaterials Science, Graduate School of AgricultureKyoto UniversitySakyo-kuJapan

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