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Int J Food Microbiol. 1993 Sep;19(4):241-58.

Detection, identification and characterization of bacteriocin-producing lactic acid bacteria from retail food products.

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Department of Food Science, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-1160.


Forty bacteriocin-producing (Bac+) lactic acid bacteria (LAB) were isolated from food samples purchased from retail supermarkets and local farms. Of the 40 Bac+ isolates, 18 were isolated from 85 food samples by enrichment (21% isolation rate) whereas eight were obtained from 63 samples by direct plating (13% isolation rate). By direct plating, Bac+ LAB were detected at levels up to 2.4 x 10(5) cfu/g in ready-to-eat meats. The Bac+ isolates were identified by carbohydrate fermentation patterns, SDS-PAGE protein patterns, and other biochemical characteristics; SDS-PAGE proved invaluable in identifying strains that could not be identified by other means. Differential inhibitory spectra against indicator microorganisms assisted in the identification of 19 unique Bac+ isolates. Bac+ LAB included Enterococcus faecalis, Lactobacillus curvatus, Lb. delbrueckii, Lb. plantarum, Lactococcus lactis, and Pediococcus acidilactici. Lb. curvatus (four strains) and Lc. lactis (nine strains) were the only isolates inhibitory to foodborne pathogens including Listeria monocytogenes, Bacillus cereus, Clostridium perfringens and Staphylococcus aureus. Some Lc. lactis isolates inhibited as many as nine Gram-positive genera. Lb. curvatus FS47 and FS65 grew to high cell densities and produced bacteriocin at 6 degrees C; however, Lc. lactis FS56 produced greater levels of bacteriocin at lower cell densities. The high incidence of Bac+ LAB detected in retail foods indicates that the public is consuming a wide variety of Bac+ LAB that occur as natural contaminants. These data suggest a greater role for bacteriocins as biopreservatives in food.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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