Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 93, Issue 2, pp 473–485 | Cite as

Applications of microbial fermentations for production of gluten-free products and perspectives

  • Emanuele Zannini
  • Erica Pontonio
  • Deborah M. Waters
  • Elke K. Arendt


A gluten-free (GF) diet is recognised as being the only accepted treatment for celiac disease—a permanent autoimmune enteropathy triggered by the ingestion of gluten-containing cereals. The bakery products available in today’s gluten-free market are characterised by lower palatability than their conventional counterparts and may lead to nutritional deficiencies of vitamins, minerals and fibre. Thus, the production of high-quality gluten-free products has become a very important socioeconomical issue. Microbial fermentation by means of lactic acid bacteria and yeast is one of the most ecological/economical methods of producing and preserving food. In this review, the role of a fermentation process for improving the quality of GF products and for developing a new concept of GF products with nutraceutical and health-promoting characteristics will be examined.


Microbial fermentation Gluten-free foods Gluten-free beverages Lactic acid bacteria Functional foods 



The authors would like to acknowledge financial support by the Seventh Framework Program of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007–2013) and Specific Programme “Capacities”—research for the benefit of SMEs (262418 GLUTENFREE). The authors acknowledge that this research was also partly funded by FIRM Ireland. This publication solely reflects the authors’ views and the Community is not liable for any use that may be made of the information contained in this publication.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emanuele Zannini
    • 1
    • 2
  • Erica Pontonio
    • 1
  • Deborah M. Waters
    • 1
  • Elke K. Arendt
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Food and Nutritional SciencesUniversity College CorkCorkIreland
  2. 2.National Food Biotechnology CentreUniversity College CorkCorkIreland

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