An intestinal perfusion technique has been used in normal human subjects to investigate the influence that starter protein composition and hydrolysis procedure have on absorption of amino acid residues from partial enzymic hydrolysates of whole protein. Five starter proteins were studied. Three (egg albumin, casein/soy/lactalbumin, and lactalbumin) were hydrolysed by papain, a second lactalbumin starter protein, and a meat/soy/lactalbumin blend were hydrolysed by a porcine pancreatic enzyme system. Irrespective of starter protein composition or hydrolysis method used, four amino acid residues (threonine, glutamic acid, phenylalanine, and histidine) were absorbed significantly faster from all hydrolysates compared with absorption from their equivalent free amino acid mixtures. In contrast, both starter protein composition and hydrolysis method influenced absorption characteristics of up to nine other amino acid residues.
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