Quantitative prediction of bitterness masking effect of high-potency sweeteners using taste sensor

Xiao Wu, Hideya Onitake, Tamami Haraguchi, Yusuke Tahara, Rui Yatabe, Miyako Yoshida, Takahiro Uchida, Hidekazu Ikezaki, Kiyoshi Toko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


A taste sensor based on lipid/polymer membranes has been reported being possible to detect the masking of bitter substances or masking on bitterness receptors (physical masking or biochemical masking). However, it was difficult to express the bitterness suppression by sweeteners, which is decided by the balance of substances produced in human's brain (functional masking). High-potency sweeteners are one of the sweeteners used for bitterness-masking in food and pharmaceutical industry. The objective of this study is to evaluate the bitterness-masking effect of high-potency sweeteners using the taste sensor. A bitterness sensor was used to evaluate the bitterness of quinine hydrochloride, and sweetness sensors for high-potency sweeteners were used to evaluate the sweetness of aspartame and saccharine sodium. The sensory evaluation was also carried out to examine the bitterness suppression effect of high-potency sweeteners. The bitterness-prediction formulas were proposed with the aid of a model regression analysis using two outputs from the bitterness sensor and the sweetness sensor for high-potency sweeteners. As a result, the predicted bitterness showed a good correlation with the human taste when aspartame or saccharine sodium was added to quinine hydrochloride. Thus, this study provided an effective method to evaluate the bitterness suppressed by high-potency sweeteners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-17
Number of pages7
JournalSensors and Actuators, B: Chemical
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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