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Efficacy of Reuterin and Bacteriocins Nisin and Pediocin in the Preservation of Raw Milk from Dairy Farms

Nirmal Kumar1orcid tiny, Vinay Kumar1orcid tiny, Syed Mohsin Waheed1*orcid tiny and Diwas Pradhan2*orcid tiny

1Department of Biotechnology, Graphic Era (Deemed to be University), 566/6 Bell Road, Society Area, Clement Town, 248002 Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India

2Dairy Microbiology Division, ICARNational Dairy Research Institute, GT Rd, 132001 Karnal, Haryana, India

Article history:

Received: 2 April 2020

Accepted: 27 September 2020

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Key words:

reuterin, bacteriocins, raw milk, milk biopreservation, Lactobacillus reuteri


Research backgroundIn the current scenario of milk production in developing and developed countries, several factors influence the shelf-life of raw milk and add significant numbers of microbial contaminants that drastically lower the initial microbial quality leading to milk spoilage by the time it reaches the processing units.

Experimental approachThe present study was undertaken to investigate the biopreservative efficacy of reuterin system along with different combinations of bacteriocins in controlling the initial microflora of raw milk at farm level. Lactobacillus reuteri strain LR47, having effective antimicrobial activity, was shortlisted from our previous study and further characterized for reuterin production and tested in raw milk system.

Results and conclusionsPreliminary testing of the cell-free supernatant from L. reuteri LR47 demonstrated significant growth inhibition of the majority of the tested bacterial indicators of milk spoilage. Further genetic analysis of the L. reuteri LR47 revealed the presence of two genes (pduC and dhaB) involved in the utilization of glycerol to produce reuterin via two different pathways. The strain LR47 was also found to possess comparatively higher capacity to convert glycerol into reuterin when checked through colourimetric assay. In the raw milk biopreservation experiment with reuterin alone or in combination with bacteriocins, the highest level of growth suppression in the total bacterial load and coliform counts was observed in the sample that was treated with a combination of reuterin, nisin and pediocin. The treatment combining these three natural biopreservatives at specific concentrations was able to maintain the initial microbial quality and extend the shelf-life of raw milk by 6 h at 37 °C based on the microbial counts and physicochemical properties, viz. pH and titratable acidity. In conclusion, the results confirm that the use of reuterin in combination with bacteriocins is a promising approach for temporary control of the raw milk microflora and extension of its shelf-life until further processing.

Novelty and scientific contributionThis study demonstrates for the first time the use of reuterin for the extension of shelf-life of raw milk as an alternative treatment method.

*Corresponding author: +911842259169

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