Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Agricultural biotechnology and food biotechnology

Publication Details

LWT - Food Science and Technology

Volume 44, Issue 6, July 2011, Pages 1525-1532


Dental caries is a common bacterial infection, but the progression of this disease can be delayed by preventing initial attachment of cariogenic bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans to tooth surfaces. This study firstly compares the effect of untreated (UT) and enzyme-treated (ET) dairy powders on the adherence of S. mutans to hydroxylapatite (HA), an analogue of tooth enamel. A fluorescence-based method was used to quantify adherence of S. mutans to HA both in the presence (S-HA) and absence (PBS-HA) of saliva. Secondly, binding of proteins present in the test materials to HA was quantified using bicinchonic acid assays and SDS-PAGE. In addition, the effect of UT and ET dairy powders on growth of S. mutans was examined using an optical-density based assay. UT acid whey protein concentrate (WPC) 80, sweet WPC80, buttermilk powder (BMP) and cream powder (CP) significantly (P < 0.05) inhibited adhesion of S. mutans at ≥31.25 μg mL−1 in the presence and absence of saliva. ET dairy powders were less effective inhibitors of adhesion, but ET sweet WPC80 significantly (P < 0.05) inhibited growth of S. mutans at ≥0.6 mg mL−1. Therefore, due to their adherence- and growth-inhibitory properties, dairy powders may be beneficial in the treatment of dental caries.