Microbiology & Immunology Publications

Bacterial metatranscriptome analysis of a probiotic yogurt using an RNA-Seq approach

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Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies





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Many probiotic organisms, including Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 have shown significant promise in supporting the immune function of people living with HIV. Moreover, certain micronutrients have also demonstrated the ability to improve immune function and delay disease progression. A micronutrient supplemented probiotic (L. rhamnosus CAN-1) yogurt was developed by first preparing a mother culture of the probiotic species and adding them to 2% milk that was supplemented with micronutrients at 25% DRI and incubating the mixture at 37°C for 5 h. A sensory evaluation was performed to assess consumer acceptance of the products as 1: 12.5% DRI and standard cultures; 2: 25% DRI and standard cultures; 3: 12.5% DRI and probiotic cultures; 4: 25% DRI and probiotic cultures. Micronutrients slightly inhibited the viable counts of L. rhamnosus CAN-1; however, the colony forming units remained above what is considered the therapeutic level (WHO, 2001) at the end of the shelf life (21 days) Consumers preferred product 3 over the others, suggesting yogurt is a suitable carrier for L. rhamnosus CAN-1 and micronutrients. Industrial Relevance: This study is highly relevant to industry as it is a new development of a functional food for use in a clinical population. While yogurt itself has increased in popularity, so has the demand for functional foods. In addition, yogurt is a relatively simple and low-maintenance technology, which can be easily transferred to diverse settings such as Sub-Saharan Africa, where the need for strategies to alleviate suffering from malnutrition and HIV are urgently needed. Yogurt has also been shown to be an inhospitable environment for pathogenic bacteria, thus this technology would be suitable for small-scale social businesses in developing countries where electricity and hygiene are more challenging than larger industry. These products were well accepted by consumers, suggesting its potential viability in North American markets, but more specifically for patient populations in hospital. Nutrition and immune function are closely linked, which suggests that other populations suffering from nutrition and immune disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease, cancer, and aging populations may also benefit from a product that combines the immunostimulatory potential of probiotics with a nutritious medium of micronutrient supplemented yogurt. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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