Foto del docente

Fausto Gardini

Professor

Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences

Academic discipline: AGR/16 Agricultural Microbiology

Research

Accumulation of biogenic amines in fermented foods in relation to the microbial population dynamics and the technological conditions

Antimicrobial effects of essential oils and aroma compounds

Microbiology of fermented foods (cheese, sourdough, dry sausages)

Predictive microbiology applicatio in foods

Fishery product microbiology



Biogenic amines in fermented foods: the presence of these toxic substances produced by microbial metabolism has been evaluated in various food in relation to the factors influencing their accumulation. In particular, the content of biogenic amines in cheese, dry fermented sausages and wine has been considered. In vitro studies allowed to verify the effect od several chemico-physical variables on the aminobiogenetic potential of strains of Oenococcus oeni and Enterococcus faecalis. Recently, an experimental protocol for the use of a molecular probe to verify the presence and quantify the expression of the tdh gene (tyrosine decarboxylase) has been set up and applied to foods (dry sausages)

The antimicrobial effects of aroma compounds (essential oils or specific molecole) have been studied in vitro to evaluate their bioactivity and mechanisms of action as well as the possibility to use such substances to prolong the shelf life of food products. In particular aldehydes originated from the lipoxygenase pathway (hexenal, (E)-2-hexenal) and citrus molecules and essential oils have been considered. The in vitro studies have been followed by industrial application on fruit based foods (fruit salads and beverages) with particular attention to the microbial stability and safety of foods and to the organolectic compatibility of the aroma compounds.

 

Microbiology of fermented foods: The compositions of different microbiota of several fermented foods and their effects on the fermentative and ripening processes have been studied. The studies have been carried out on several matrices (dry sausages, cheese, sourdough) and were directed towards the evaluation of the development of the microbial populations during fermentations as well as to the characterization of specific characteristics of defined components of the populations in relation to technological or safety features (production of toxic substances, antibiotic resistance, peptidase activity, aroma production, etc.)

Mathematical and statistical instruments for the exploitation and interpretation of microbiological data. The application to real systems of the classical tools of predictive microbiology has been evaluated and potential instruments have been exploited. In particular several classical primary and secondary predictive models have been tested for the study of microbial characteristics in vivo and in vitro, as well as probabilistic model, such as the logit equation. Moreover the possibility to apply techniques, such as classification tree, to the exploitation of data obtained with molecular techniques has been investigated

 Microbiology of fishery products: several fishery products (including mollusks and fishes) have been characterized for their microbiological and compositional (presence of toxic substances, metals and components with nutritional interest) features in relation to the characteristics of the seawater and storage

 

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