A simple method, based on solid-phase microextraction gas chromatography–mass spectrometry, was developed for the study of the aromatic profile of cultured gilthead sea bream fish during frozen storage. The method was applied to the study of the volatile profile of fresh and frozen-thawed Italian and Spanish cultured gilthead sea bream fish over 266 days of frozen storage. Variations in the chromatographic responses of a number of volatile compounds during storage were detected and the observed differences evaluated on a biochemical basis. Correlations with oxidation parameters, e.g. peroxide value and thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance indices, indicated 1-octen-3-ol, 1-penten-3-ol, and Z-4-heptenal as markers for the differentiation between fresh and frozen-thawed fish.
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