Journal of Dairy Research

Original Articles

Antibacterial and antiviral activity of camel milk protective proteins

El Sayed I. El Agamya1, Roger Ruppannera1, Amin Ismaila2, Claude P. Champagnea3 and Robert Assafa2§

a1 Faculty of Agriculture, Alexandria University, Egypt

a2 Ministère de l'Agriculture des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation, Institut Armand Frappier, Université du Québec, 531 boulevard des Prairies, Laval, Québec, Canada H7V 1B7

a3 Food Research and Development Centre, Agriculture Canada, St Hyacinthe, Québec, Canada J2S 8E3


Lysozyme (LZ), lactoferrin (LF), lactoperoxidase (LP), immunoglobulin G and secretory immunoglobulin A were extracted from camel milk. The activity of these protective proteins was assayed against Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris, Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella typhimurium and rotavirus. Comparative activities of egg white LZ, bovine LZ and bovine LF are also presented. The antibacterial activity spectrum of camel milk LZ was similar to that of egg white LZ, and differed from bovine milk LZ. Bovine and camel milk LF antibacterial activity spectra were similar. The camel milk LP was bacteriostatic against the Gram-positive strains and was bactericidal against Gram-negative cultures. The immunoglobulins had little effect against the bacteria but high titres of antibodies against rotavirus were found in camel milk. The LP system was ineffective against rotavirus.

(Received July 01 1991)

(Accepted December 09 1991)


§ For reprints.