Lysozyme Activity in Buffalo Milk: Effect of Lactation Period, Parity, Mastitis, Season in India, pH and Milk Processing Heat Treatment

  • Priyadarshini, Subhadra (Division of Animal Biochemistry, National Dairy Research Institute) ;
  • Kansal, Vinod K. (Division of Animal Biochemistry, National Dairy Research Institute)
  • Received : 2001.11.05
  • Accepted : 2002.01.15
  • Published : 2002.06.01


Lysozyme activity in buffalo milk in relation to the period of lactation, parity of animal, weather conditions and udder infections was studied. Effect of storage and heat processing of milk on lysozyme activity was determined. Lysozyme activity was higher in buffalo milk than in cow milk. Buffalo colostrum showed lysozyme activity 5 times of that in mature milk. Lysozyme activity in buffalo milk was not influenced by the parity of animal and the stage of lactation, however, it increased during extreme whether conditions (winter and summer). Lysozyme in both cow and buffalo milk exhibited maximum activity at pH 7.4. Buffalo milk lysozyme was fully stable while the cow milk lysozyme was partly inactivated by pasteurization (low temperature-long time as well as high temperature-short time treatments). Lysozyme in buffalo milk was more stable than in cow milk during storage and heat treatment. A 10 to 50-fold increase in milk lysozyme activity was observed in mastitic cows. An assay of lysozyme activity in milk can be used to diagnose mastitis in cattle but not in buffaloes. Some buffaloes exhibited 1000 fold greater lysozyme activity and moderately raised somatic cell count in milk, but there was no sign of mastitis in these animals. A possible role of milk lysozyme in prevention of mastitis in buffaloes is discussed.


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