Eight bacteria genera and yeasts were isolated from wara - a local soft cheese from Nigeria, the bacteria genera were made up of 76% lactic acid bacteria (LAB), 17% Enterobacteria and 7% Staphylococci. The LAB group was made up of the generaLactobacillus, Leuconostoc, Streptococcus and Pediococcus with Lactobacillusbeing the most frequently occurring genus. Escherichia coli, Klebsiella andEnterobacter made up the Enterobacteria group. A protease enzyme produced by theE. coli was characterized. Its activity was found to be highest at 60°C and pH 5.4. The protease activity was highest at 5 mmol/l and was inhibited at 10 mmol/l concentration of EDTA.
Key words: Wara, lactic acid bacteria, Escherichia coli, protease.
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