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Open AccessArticle

Autochthonous and Probiotic Lactic Acid Bacteria Employed for Production of “Advanced Traditional Cheeses”

1
Institute of Sciences of Food Production, National Research Council of Italy (CNR-ISPA), via G. Amendola 122/O, 70126 Bari, Italy
2
Stazione Zoologica ‘Anton Dohrn’ of Naples, Integrative Marine Ecology Department, Villa comunale, 80121 Naples, Italy
3
Institute of Sciences of Food Production, National Research Council of Italy (CNR-ISPA), via Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Foods 2019, 8(9), 412; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods8090412
Received: 23 July 2019 / Revised: 10 September 2019 / Accepted: 11 September 2019 / Published: 13 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Safety and Quality of Dairy Foods)
Microbial characterization of two Italian traditional cheeses, Giuncata and Caciotta Leccese, was carried out, with the aim to isolate autochthonous bacterial strains to be used as starters to improve and standardize the quality of these cheeses. More than 400 bacterial isolates were found, using PCR-based identification, to belong to 12 species of the Streptococcus, Lactococcus, Lactobacillus, and Leuconostoc genera. The dominant strains were screened for antagonistic activity against pathogenic and spoilage bacteria and exopolysaccharide production, acidification, and proteolytic activity. Since Streptococcus macedonicus was found to be the most prevalent lactic acid bacteria species present in milk and in both types of cheese, the best performing strain of this species was successfully used, alone or in combination with a selected autochthonous Lactococcus lactis strain, in pilot-scale productions of Giuncata and Caciotta Leccese cheeses, respectively. The combined inoculums of selected autochthonous strains positively influenced the sensory characteristics of both Giuncata and Caciotta cheeses. Finally, the selected autochthonous cultures were enriched with a potentially probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain and successfully used in pilot-scale productions of these traditional cheeses. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study reporting the use of an autochthonous S. macedonicus strain as a starter for the production of cheeses with added probiotics. In addition, the identification of the probiotic strain in the feces of healthy volunteers fed with the advanced traditional cheese proved its effectiveness as a carrier for the delivery of probiotics to the human body. View Full-Text
Keywords: Streptococcus macedonicus; Lactobacillus rhamnosus; Lactococcus lactis; autochthonous starter cultures; goat milk; cow milk; fresh cheese; ripened cheese; probiotic cheese; microbial food quality and safety Streptococcus macedonicus; Lactobacillus rhamnosus; Lactococcus lactis; autochthonous starter cultures; goat milk; cow milk; fresh cheese; ripened cheese; probiotic cheese; microbial food quality and safety
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fusco, V.; Quero, G.M.; Poltronieri, P.; Morea, M.; Baruzzi, F. Autochthonous and Probiotic Lactic Acid Bacteria Employed for Production of “Advanced Traditional Cheeses”. Foods 2019, 8, 412.

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