Revista Lasallista de Investigación
Print version ISSN 1794-4449
ALZATE TAMAYO, Luz María; ARTEAGA GONZALEZ, Diana María and JARAMILLO GARCES, Yamilé. Evaluation to potential uses of the carob tree's fruit (HYMENAEA COURBARYL L) -shell and seeds- as a natural preserver for food. Rev. Lasallista Investig. [online]. 2011, vol.8, n.1, pp. 90-95. ISSN 1794-4449.
Introduction. Hymenaea courbaril Linneaus,or carob tree1, is well known given its multiple anti-bacterial, anti fungal and nutritional properties caused by its chemical and dietetic characteristics, thus being an interesting resource to make research works about its fruit as a natural source with preservation properties for the food industry. Objetivo. The objective of this research work was to evaluate the anti microbial capacity of the carob tree's fruit over a microorganism that acts as a quality indicator in food. The Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922) strain was chosen because it is reported as one of the most common microorganisms involved in foodborne diseases. Materials and methods. The method used was a definition of the concentrations necessary in alcohol and aqueous extracts of the pulp, the shell and the seeds, in order to inhibit the microorganism's growth. By the use of the well diffusion technique with some modifications, the E.coli strain was subjected to the action of the extracts. Results. In the preliminary tests the best results were those obtained with the seed in alcoholic extract, and, therefore, the aqueous extracts were disregarded given their little or null inhibitory action. The anti bacterial spectrum was determined by the minimal inhibitory concentration at 20% for the alcoholic extract of the seed. This was achieved during tests in which the extract was used in weekly intervals. Conclusion. According to the results, it is possible tosay that the part of the carob tree's fruit with the highest anti microbial activity is the seed with halo diametersbetween 15 and 25 mm, compared to those of the shell and the pulp, which did not show significant inhibition halos (under 15 and zero, respectively). Hence the existence of substances with an inhibitory potential from a natural source from the carob tree's fruit can be concluded.
Keywords : carob tree's fruit; preservative; antimicrobial; additive; stability.