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Int J Food Microbiol. 2011 Oct 3;149(3):194-208. doi: 10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2011.07.008. Epub 2011 Jul 21.

Selective and differential enumerations of Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei and Bifidobacterium spp. in yoghurt--a review.

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School of Biomedical and Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Engineering and Science, Victoria University, Werribee Campus, P.O. Box 14428, Melbourne, Victoria 8001, Australia.


Yoghurt is increasingly being used as a carrier of probiotic bacteria for their potential health benefits. To meet with a recommended level of ≥10(6) viable cells/g of a product, assessment of viability of probiotic bacteria in market preparations is crucial. This requires a working method for selective enumeration of these probiotic bacteria and lactic acid bacteria in yoghurt such as Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, Lb. acidophilus, Lb. casei and Bifidobacterium. This chapter presents an overview of media that could be used for differential and selective enumerations of yoghurt bacteria. De Man Rogosa Sharpe agar containing fructose (MRSF), MRS agar pH 5.2 (MRS 5.2), reinforced clostridial prussian blue agar at pH 5.0 (RCPB 5.0) or reinforced clostridial agar at pH 5.3 (RCA 5.3) are suitable for enumeration of Lb. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus when the incubation is carried out at 45°C for 72h. S. thermophilus (ST) agar and M17 are recommended for selective enumeration of S. thermophilus. Selective enumeration of Lb. acidophilus in mixed culture could be made in Rogosa agar added with 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-β-d-glucopyranoside (X-Glu) or MRS containing maltose (MRSM) and incubation in a 20% CO2 atmosphere. Lb. casei could be selectively enumerated on specially formulated Lb. casei (LC) agar from products containing yoghurt starter bacteria (S. thermophilus and Lb. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus), Lb. acidophilus, Bifidobacterium spp. and Lb. casei. Bifidobacterium could be enumerated on MRS agar supplemented with nalidixic acid, paromomycin, neomycin sulphate and lithium chloride (MRS-NPNL) under anaerobic incubation at 37°C for 72h.

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