Patent Number: 7,087,402

Title: Selective transesterification of stanols in mixtures comprising sterols and stanols

Abstract: The present invention is related to a process for selectively transesterifying stanols in mixtures comprising sterols and stanols, and a process for separating sterols from said mixtures. The process of selective transesterification comprises the forming of a reacting mixture by contacting a selective lipase with a reactant mixture comprising sterols and stanols and an ester selected from the group consisting of esters of an organic acid with a short chain aliphatic alcohol. The transetrifying is carried out agitated reactors at pressures below atmospheric pressure and temperatures from 30 to 90.degree. C. The process for separating a fraction comprising sterols from a mixture comprising sterols and stanols comprises the steps: a) forming a reactive mixture by contacting a selective lipase with a reactant mixture comprising sterols and stanols and an ester selected from the group consisting of esters of an organic acid with a short chain aliphatic alcohol; b) forming a reacted mixture by separating the selective lipase from the reacting; and c) separating from the reacted mixture a fraction comprising sterols The reaction is carried out in agitated reactors at pressures below atmospheric pressure and temperatures from 30 to 90.degree. C. Recovering from the reacted mixture of a fraction comprising sterols comprise one or more distillation steps at reduced pressure or one or more distillation and crystallization steps.

Inventors: Diaz; Miguel Angel Fuenzalida (Santiago, CL), Rojas; Alejandro Markovits (Santiago, CL), Schersl; Endre Markovits (Santiago, CL), Basterrechea; Irene Martinez (Santiago, CL)

Assignee: Harting, S.A.

International Classification: C12P 33/00 (20060101); C12P 7/64 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 8/08/02018