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Keywords:

  • lactic acid bacteria;
  • mycotoxicogenic fungi;
  • silage

Abstract

Aims

To select lactic acid bacteria with potential silage inoculant properties. The bio-control activity against mycotoxicogenic fungi and the presence of antibiotics resistance gene were also evaluated.

Methods and Results

Lactobacillus rhamnosus RC007 and Lactobacillus plantarum RC009 were selected on the basis of growth rate and efficacy in reducing the pH of maize extract medium; therefore, they were evaluated for their bio-control ability against Fusarium graminearum and Aspergillus parasiticus. Studies on lag phase, growth rate and aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) and zearalenone (ZEA) production were carried out in vitro under different regimes of aw (0·95 and 0·99); pH (4 and 6); temperature (25 and 37°C); and oxygen availability (normal and reduced). Lactobacillus rhamnosus RC007 was able to completely inhibit the F. graminearum growth at all assayed conditions, while Lact. plantarum RC009 only did it at pH 4. Both Lactobacillus strains were able to significantly reduce the A. parasiticus growth rate mainly at 0·99 aw. A decrease in ZEA production was observed as result of Lactobacillus strains –F. graminearum interaction; however, the A. parasiticus- Lact. plantarum interaction resulted in an increased AFB1 production. Lactobacillus rhamnosus RC007 proved to have no genes for resistance to the tested antibiotics.

Conclusions

The ability of Lact. rhamnosus RC007 to rapidly drop the pH and to inhibit fungal growth and mycotoxin production and the absence of antibiotic resistance genes shows the potential of its application as inoculant and bio-control agent in animal feed.

Significance and Impact of the Study

This study demonstrated the importance of selecting bacteria for silage inoculants not only for the improvement of silage fermentation but also for their effects on mycotoxicogenic fungi and the resulting mycotoxin production due to the risk that they may involve.