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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2005 Apr;16(2):198-203.

Fermented functional foods based on probiotics and their biogenic metabolites.

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  • 1Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre, BioScience Institute, University College Cork, Co. Cork, Ireland.


The claimed health benefits of fermented functional foods are expressed either directly through the interaction of ingested live microorganisms, bacteria or yeast with the host (probiotic effect) or indirectly as a result of ingestion of microbial metabolites produced during the fermentation process (biogenic effect). Although still far from fully understood, several probiotic mechanisms of action have been proposed, including competitive exclusion, competition for nutrients and/or stimulation of an immune response. The biogenic properties of fermented functional foods result from the microbial production of bioactive metabolites such as certain vitamins, bioactive peptides, organic acids or fatty acids during fermentation.

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