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J Dairy Sci. 1992 May;75(5):1192-6.

Lithium chloride-sodium propionate agar for the enumeration of bifidobacteria in fermented dairy products.

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Quality and Safety Assurance Department, Nestec Ltd., Nestlé Research Center, Vers-Chez-les-Blanc, Switzerland.


Lithium chloride-sodium propionate agar has been developed for the enumeration of bifidobacteria in fermented dairy products. The medium contains lithium chloride and sodium propionate to inhibit the growth of other lactic acid bacteria. Pure cultures of bifidobacteria, lactobacilli, and streptococci were tested for growth in this medium. With one exception, all bifidobacteria were able to grow in this medium and in a nonselective agar with a difference not exceeding .4 log units. However, none of the lactobacilli tested and only one strain each of Streptococcus salivarius ssp. thermophilus and Lactococcus lactis ssp. cremoris grew in lithium chloride-sodium propionate agar. In those cases, the numbers of colonies were lower in lithium chloride-sodium propionate agar by 1.26 and 2.51 log units, respectively, compared with a nonselective agar. Bifidobacteria were also selectively isolated from all fermented milks and cheeses analyzed.

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