Author(s): Torino MI, Font de Valdez G, Mozzi F
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Abstract Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are microorganisms widely used in the fermented food industry worldwide. Certain LAB are able to produce exopolysaccharides (EPS) either attached to the cell wall (capsular EPS) or released to the extracellular environment (EPS). According to their composition, LAB may synthesize heteropolysaccharides or homopolysaccharides. A wide diversity of EPS are produced by LAB concerning their monomer composition, molecular mass, and structure. Although EPS-producing LAB strains have been traditionally applied in the manufacture of dairy products such as fermented milks and yogurts, their use in the elaboration of low-fat cheeses, diverse type of sourdough breads, and certain beverages are some of the novel applications of these polymers. This work aims to collect the most relevant issues of the former reviews concerning the monomer composition, structure, and yields and biosynthetic enzymes of EPS from LAB; to describe the recently characterized EPS and to present the application of both EPS-producing strains and their polymers in the fermented (specifically beverages and cereal-based) food industry.
This article was published in Front Microbiol
and referenced in Applied Microbiology: Open Access