Assessment of Antimicrobial Effect of the Artemisia herba-alba Aqueous Extract as a Preservative in Algerian Traditional Fresh Cheese

Adoui Faiza


In food industry, the major challenge is to oppose food alterations. Industrial have always resorted to the use of synthetic additives developed by the chemical industry. These synthetic compounds are widely used to protect food, reducing lipid oxidation and microbial growths during food storage. However, some of them have shown several disadvantages and limits of use like butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) or butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), which are suspected to have pathological and toxic effects as chronic toxicity (carcinogenic and allergenic effects). Hence, the new antimicrobial agents should be from natural wholesome sources. Thus, essential oils, proteins and peptides represent the new generation of antimicrobial agents. The efficiency of medicinal plants has driven researchers to conduct thorough studies of defense systems to identify active molecules. These latter synthesized by the plant, as being secondary metabolites are classified into different families according to their chemical structure.The active molecules might be phenolic and proteinaceous compounds, and peptides with antimicrobial activities. Several extracts and essential oils of A. herba-alba have shown biological activities, such as anti-malarial, anti-viral, anti-tumor, antihemorrhagic, anti-coagulant, antioxidant, antidiabetic activities and strong antibacterial activities against several human pathogens [22-24]. A. herba-alba essential oil contain mainly aromatic substances such as terpenoid, flavonoid, coumarin, acetylenes, caffeoylquinic acids and sterols. In addition to the previously described components, A. herba-alba contains antimicrobial peptides.

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