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Title: Caffeine in tea plants [Camellia sinensis (L) O. Kuntze] : In situ lowering by Bacillus licheniformis (Weigmann) Chester
Authors: Ramarethinam, S
Rajalakshmi, N
Keywords: Bacillus licheniformis;Camellia sinesis;Caffeine-free tea
Issue Date: Jun-2004
Publisher: NISCAIR-CSIR, India
IPC Code: Int Cl7 A01N63/00; C 12N9/56
Abstract: Tea plants (Camellia sinensis) contain 5-6% caffeine that is responsible for the stimulating effect of the beverage. As the tolerance to caffeine varies among individuals, low caffeine tea would be an ideal alternative. While assessing the potential of a few selected bacteria-Bacillus licheniformis, B. subtilis and B. Firmus, to multiply on nutrient medium supplemented with glucose (5%) and tea leaf extract (2%), it was observed that only B. licheniformis could proliferate on this medium. Hence, B. licheniformis was used for further studies. Tea plants were sprayed with a suspension of B. licheniformis at a dilution of 5 x 108 CFU/ml containing 0.1% Tween 80 as surfactant. In situ lowering of caffeine from tea leaves was evident without affecting the quality of the other tea components. Further, there was no change in the morphological and physiological characteristics as well. It is suggested that spraying of B. licheniformis may be useful in yielding decaffeinated tea with good flavour and aroma.
Page(s): 575-580
ISSN: 0975-1009 (Online); 0019-5189 (Print)
Appears in Collections:IJEB Vol.42(06) [June 2004]

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