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Production of Cyclopiazonic Acid by Molds Isolated from Taleggio Cheese

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Twenty-seven strains of Penicillium were isolated from the rind of Taleggio, a typical Italian cheese, so that we could test their capacity to produce cyclopiazonic acid (CPA); all strains produced CPA. The production was strongly influenced by the strain variety and growth conditions. Strains incubated at 25°C for 7 days always produced CPA in mannitol broth, with concentrations ranging from 0.02 to 1 μg/ml, whereas only 33% of strains grown in yeast-extract broth produced CPA, with a maximum value of 0.1 μg/ml. In milk, maximum production (1.6 μg/ml) was observed after 14 days of incubation at 25°C. In order to evaluate the presence of the toxin and its capacity for migrating into the cheeses, the rind, the cheese near the rind, and the cores from six Taleggio cheeses were analyzed. CPA was present in five cheeses, with a maximum concentration of 0.25 mg/kg in one rind, and in one cheese, the toxin migrated to the core. A positive correlation between CPA production and surface mold was found.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Dipartimento di Ingegneria e Tecnologie Agro-Forestali, Università degli Studi di Palermo, viale delle Scienze 13, 90128 Palermo, Italy 2: Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Alimentari e Microbiologiche, Università degli Studi di Milano, via Celoria 2, 20133 Milano, Italy

Publication date: 1999-10-01

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