Carnobacterium maltaromaticum is a lactic acid bacterium isolated from soft cheese. The objective of this work was to study its potential positive impact when used in cheese technology. Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of six strains of C. maltaromaticum showed that they belong to different phylogenetic groups. Although these strains lacked the ability to coagulate milk quickly, they were acidotolerant. They did not affect the coagulation capacity of starter lactic acid bacteria, Lactococcus lactis and Streptococcus thermophilus, used in dairy industry. The impact of C. maltaromaticum LMA 28 on bacterial flora of cheese revealed a significant decrease of Psychrobacter sp. concentration, which might be responsible for cheese aging phenomena. An experimental plan was carried out to unravel the mechanism of inhibition of Psychrobacter sp. and Listeria monocytogenes and possible interaction between various factors (cell concentration, NaCl, pH and incubation time). Cellular concentration of C. maltaromaticum LMA 28 was found to be the main factor involved in the inhibition of Psychrobacter sp. and L. monocytogenes.
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