Lactobacillus helveticus: Health effects, current applications, and future trends in dairy fermentation

Kobika Chelladhurai, Mutamed Ayyash, Mark S. Turner, Afaf Kamal-Eldin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Lactobacillus helveticus is a homofermentative, thermophilic starter bacterium commonly used in dairy processing to produce cheese and fermented milk. It is known for enhancing flavor and texture and improving the final products' health benefits. L. helveticus has a number of characteristic features that differentiate it from commonly used starter cultures, including the ability to metabolize galactose, high acidification rate, and strong proteolytic activity. Scope and approach: This article aims to review the key features of L. helveticus relevant to the dairy industry, i.e., technological advantages, health effects, current applications, and future trends in dairy fermentation. It provides an overview of the health benefits associated with the consumption of L. helveticus-fermented dairy products, which are enriched in bioactive components. The review covered some important strains, bioactive peptides, and their health advantages. Key findings and conclusions: L. helveticus is characterized by strong proteolytic activity that leads to the production of technologically- and physiologically active peptides that contribute to products’ flavor and health benefits. The consumption of L. helveticus-fermented dairy products was shown to contribute bioactive compounds with antimicrobial, antioxidant, antihypertensive, anticarcinogenic, gut-wellness, psychobiotic, and immunostimulatory effects. L. helveticus is, thus, a potential bacterium for use in future starter cultures designed for the production of functional dairy products.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-168
Number of pages10
JournalTrends in Food Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023


  • Bioactive compounds
  • Fermentation
  • Health benefits
  • Lactobacillus helveticus
  • Milk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science


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