Inhibitory Power of Kefir: The Role of Organic Acids

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Milk and MRS broth fermented with kefir grains from different households were examined for inhibitory activity toward gram-negative and gram-positive strains. Fermented milk obtained with 10 g per 100 ml of inoculum (final pH 3.32 to 4.25) and MRS broth fermented with 1 and 10 g per 100 ml of inocula (final pH 4.18 to 5.25) had inhibitory power demonstrated by spot test and agar well diffusion assay. This inhibitory effect could be assigned to the undissociated form of lactic and acetic acid produced during the fermentation process. Kefir supernatants inhibited the growth of Escherichia coli 3 in nutrient broth at 37°C for 24 h. However, supernatants of yogurt or milk artificially acidified with lactic and acetic acids allowed the growth of E. coli 3 in the same conditions. A bacteriostatic effect of milk fermented with kefir grains over E. coli 3 was also demonstrated.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo en Criotecnología de Alimentos (CIDCA), 47 y 116 (1900), La Plata, Argentina

Publication date: March 1, 2000

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