Antimycotic and antiaflatoxigenic effect of lactic acid bacteria: A review

Hassan Gourama, Lloyd B. Bullerman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


Lactic acid bacteria are extensively used in the fermentation of a wide variety of food products and are known for their preservative and therapeutic effects. Many lactic acid bacteria species have been reported to inactivate bacterial pathogens, and numerous antibacterial substances have been isolated. However, the antimycotic and antimycotoxigenic potential of lactic acid bacteria has still not been fully investigated. Fermented foods such as cheese can be contaminated by molds and mycotoxins. Mold causes spoilage and renders the product unusable for consumption, and the presence of mycotoxins presents a potential health hazard. A limited number of reports have shown that lactic acid bacteria affect mold growth and afl atoxin production. Although numerous lactic acid bacteria such as Lactobacillus spp. were found to inhibit aflatoxin biosynthesis, other lactic bacteria such as Lactococcus lactis were found to stimulate aflatoxin production. The morphology of lactic acid bacteria cells has also been found to be affected by the presence of fungal mycelia and aflatoxin. Lactococcus lactis cells became larger and formed long chains in the presence of A spergillus flavus and aflatoxins. Numerous investigations reported that low pH, depletion of nutrients, and microbial competition do not explain the reason for aflatoxin inhibition. Some investigators suggested that the inhibition of aflatoxin is due to lactic acid and/or lactic acid bacteria metabolites. These metabolites have been reported to be heat-stable low-molecularweight compounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1275-1280
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of food protection
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1995

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science
  • Microbiology


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