Selected Article


Overview of a surface-ripened cheese community functioning by meta-omics analyses


Cheese ripening is a complex biochemical process driven by microbial communities composed of both eukaryotes and prokaryotes. Surface-ripened cheeses are widely consumed all over the world and are appreciated for their characteristic flavor. Microbial community composition has been studied for a long time on surface-ripened cheeses, but only limited knowledge has been acquired about its in situ metabolic activities. We applied metagenomic, metatranscriptomic and biochemical analyses to an experimental surface-ripened cheese composed of nine microbial species during four weeks of ripening. By combining all of the data, we were able to obtain an overview of the cheese maturation process and to better understand the metabolic activities of the different community members and their possible interactions. Furthermore, differential expression analysis was used to select a set of biomarker genes, providing a valuable tool that can be used to monitor the cheese-making process.