Macrowine 2021
IVES 9 IVES Conference Series 9 Reaction Mechanisms of Copper and Iron with Hydrogen Sulfide and Thiols in Model Wine

Reaction Mechanisms of Copper and Iron with Hydrogen Sulfide and Thiols in Model Wine


Fermentation derived sulfidic off-odors due to hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and low molecular weight thiols are commonly encountered in wine production and removed by Cu(II) fining. However, the mechanism underlying Cu(II) fining remains poorly understood, and generally results in increased Cu concentration that lead to deleterious reactions in finished wine. The present study describes a mechanistic investigation of the iron and copper mediated reaction of H2S, cysteine, 3-sulfanylhexan-1-ol, and 6-sulfanylhexan-1-ol with oxygen. The concentrations of H2S, thiols, oxygen, and acetaldehyde were monitored over time. It was found that Cu(II) was rapidly reduced by both H2S and thiols to Cu(I). The addition of Fe(III) in combination with Cu resulted in the rapid reduction of Fe(III) by Cu(I) and the resulting Fe(II) redox cycled by reacting with oxygen. Furthermore, the presence of Fe and thiols prevented the removal of H2S by precipitation as insoluble CuS promoting H2S oxidation and formation of polysulfides, effectively keeping both metals and sulfide species in wine after the copper fining process.

Publication date: May 17, 2024

Issue: Macrowine 2016

Type: Article


Gal Kreitman*, David Jeffery, John Danilewicz, Ryan Elias

*Penn State University

Contact the author


IVES Conference Series | Macrowine | Macrowine 2016


Related articles…

Evaluation of colloidal stability in white and rosé wines investing Dynamic Light Scattering technology

Proteins constitute one of the three main components of grape juice and white wine, phenolic compounds and polysaccharides being the others. A specific group of the total grape-derived proteins resists degradation or adsorption during the winemaking process and remains in finished wine if not removed by the commonplace commercial practice of bentonite fining. While bentonite is effective in removing the problematic proteins, it is claimed to adversely affect the quality of the treated wine under certain conditions, through the removal of colour, flavor and texture compounds. A number of studies have indicated that different protein fractions require distinct bentonite concentrations for protein removal and consequent heat stabilization.

Towards multi-purpose valorisation of polyphenols from grape pomace: Pressurized liquid extraction coupled to purification by membrane processes

Grape by-products (including skins, seeds, stems and vine shoots) are rich in health promoting polyphenols. Their extraction from winery waste and their following purification are of special interest to produce extracts with high added value compounds. Meanwhile, the growing concern over environmental problems associated with economic constraints, require the development of environmentally sustainable extraction technologies. The extraction using semi-continuous subcritical water, as a natural solvent at high temperature and high pressure a technology is promising “green” technology that is environmentally friendly, energy efficient and improve the extraction process in plant tissues.

Extraction of polyphenols from grape marc by supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) and evaluation of their ‘bioavailability’ as dietary supplements

In the winemaking process, several compounds that remain in the grape skins and seeds after the fermentation stage are bioactive-compounds (substances with potential beneficial effects on health) that can be extracted in order to recovery valuable substances with a high commercial value for the cosmetic, food (nutraceuticals) and pharmaceutical industries. The skins contain significant amounts of bioactive substances such as tannins (16-27%) and other polyphenolic compounds (2-6.5%) in particular, catechins, anthocyanins, proanthocyanins, quercetin , ellagic acid and resveratrol.

Novel analytical technologies for wine fingerprinting in and beyond the laboratory

For characterization, sensory designing and authentication rapid analytical technologies have become available. Some, like Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometry allow a rapid spectrum of the volatile compounds of wines. Combined with chemometrics wines can be characterized. The same approach can be used to calculate the results of virtual mixtures and allow formulation of constant quality blends. Other new techniques and portable devices based on spectroscopy allow measurements on production sites and in grocery stores, even for the smart consumer. We will present some examples of the application of these techniques for authentication of wines, both in the laboratory and on site.

Flavanol glycosides in grapes and wines : the key missing molecular intermediates in condensed tannin biosynthesis ?

Polyphenols are present in a wide variety of plants and foods such as tea, cacao and grape1. An important sub-class of these compounds is the flavanols present in grapes and wines as monomers (e.g (+)-catechin or (-)-epicatechin), or polymers also called condensed tannins or proanthocyanidins. They have important antioxidant properties2 but their biosynthesis remains partly unknown. Some recent studies have focused on the role of glycosylated intermediates that are involved in the transport of the monomers and may serve as precursors in the polymerization mechanism3, 4. The global objective of this work is to identify flavanol glycosides in grapes or wines, describe their structure and determine their abundance during grape development and in wine.