Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 128, Issue 2, pp 157-161

First online:

The structural organization of the Tibi grain as revealed by light, scanning and transmission microscopy

  • Marielise MoinasAffiliated withNestle Research Department
  • , Marc HorisbergerAffiliated withNestle Research Department
  • , Heinz BauerAffiliated withNestle Research Department

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Tibi grains consist of a unique and very stable symbiotic association of Lactobacillus brevis, Streptococcus lactis and Saccharomyces cerevisiae embedded in a dextran matrix. The structural organization of the grain was examined by light, scanning and transmission electron microscopy. The grain was constituted of an outer compact layer and an inner spongy structure. The outer layer was more densely populated by the microorganisms than the inner layer but dextran, stained on frozen thin sections with fluorescein-conjugated concanavalin A, was more abundant in the inner layer.

Key words

Lactobacillus brevis Streptococcus lactis Saccharomyces cerevisiae Concanavalin A Symbiosis Tibi