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Project ID: QLK1-CT-2002-02388
Financiado con arreglo a: FP5-LIFE QUALITY
País: Denmark

Application studies of biogenic amines formation in fermented foods

Yoghurt was manufactured using the following culture combinations; Lactobacillus bulgaricus LB12 + Streptococcus thermophilus CHCC6483 (histamine positive); Lb. bulgaricus LB12 + S. thermophilus CHCC1524 (histamine positive); Lb. bulgaricus LB12 + S. thermophilus CHCC3050 (histamine negative). Immediately after fermentation (Day 1), and upon storage at 4°C (Day 20 and Day 50), samples were withdrawn and prepared for histamine determination by HPLC.

Histamine was found to be present in the yoghurt, which contained Lb. bulgaricus LB12 together with either of the histamine positive S. thermophilus strains (CHCC6483 or CHCC1524); no histamine was detected for yoghurt manufactured with the histamine negative S. thermophilus strains (CHCC3050). Presumably, Lb. bulgaricus LB12 produces histidine, which is subsequently decarboxylated to histamine by the positive S. thermophilus strains. It was also found that the majority of the histamine produced was formed during the yoghurt fermentation itself, and only a minimal increase in histamine was observed upon storage of the yoghurts at 4ºC for up to 50 days.

Based on this study it was concluded that the yoghurt manufactured with the histamine positive S. thermophilus strains (CHCC6483 or CHCC1524) is unlikely to pose a significant risk due to the low levels of histamine detected (approximately 20 mg/l). Nevertheless, if a histamine positive strain is used for yoghurt production then the availability of histidine should be limited as much as possible.

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Fergal Patrick RATTRAY, (Research scientist)
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