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Food Microbiol. 2017 Jun;64:33-38. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2016 Dec 18.

Applicability of a colorimetric method for evaluation of lactic acid bacteria with probiotic properties.

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World Institute of Kimchi, Gwangju 61755, Republic of Korea.
World Institute of Kimchi, Gwangju 61755, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:


Rapid colorimetric methods using various indicator reagents have been developed to monitor bacterial viability. Here, we examined the applicability of a method based on the reduction of resazurin or water-soluble tetrazolium salt-8 (WST-8) to screen lactic acid bacteria (LAB) for growth, tolerance against bile acid and low pH. The resazurin reduction test proved unsuitable for screening LAB such as Lactobacillus plantarum and Leuconostoc mesenteroides since it reacted with acid present in the cultures. LAB growth could be indirectly quantified by measuring WST-8 reduction. This method proved more sensitive and quickly results than counting bacterial colony forming units and turbidity at 600 nm in the presence of bile and acid. Our results suggested that the WST-8-based method could be useful for the characterization of growth and tolerance of the lactic acid producing bacteria.


Colorimetric assay; LAB; Lactobacillus plantarum; Probiotics

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