The effect of lactation stage and size on the lipid composition of bovine milk fat globules (MFG) and their membranes (MFGM) was investigated. MFG were separated into six size groups (1-3 μm) from samples collected in early, mid and late lactation stages (10-250 days postpartum). Fatty acid and polar lipid composition was determined in each size group, at each lactation stage. PUFA concentration was affected by lactation stage but not MFG size. Saturated fatty acid concentration at 60 days postpartum was 10% higher in small vs. large globules. Phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol followed the same concentration pattern throughout lactation in all MFG size groups. From day 100 postpartum on, phosphatidylethanolamine concentration was constant in the large MFG, but dropped twofold in the small MFG. Results suggest distinct compositional regulation for large and small MFG at different lactation stages. Such interactions between structure, composition and lactation stage may be exploited for human milk and dairy product consumption.
- Fatty acid composition
- Milk fat globule
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Analytical Chemistry
- Food Science