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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2006

Effect of protein composition on the cheese-making properties of milk from individual dairy cows

Wedholm A, Larsen LB, Lindmark-Mansson H, Karlsson AH, Andren A


The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of variations in milk protein composition on milk clotting properties and cheese yield. Milk was collected from 134 dairy cows of Swedish Red and White, Swedish Holstein, and Danish Holstein-Friesian breed at 3 sampling occasions. Concentrations of alpha(S1)-, beta-, and kappa-casein (CN), alpha-lactalbumin, and beta-lactoglobulin (LG) A and B were determined by reversed phase liquid chromatography. Cows of Swedish breeds were genotyped for genetic variants of beta- and kappa-CN. Model cheeses were produced from individual skimmed milk samples and the milk clotting properties were evaluated. More than 30% of the samples were poorly coagulating or noncoagulating, resulting in weak or no coagulum, respectively. Poorly and noncoagulating samples were associated with a low concentration of kappa-CN and a low proportion of kappa-CN in relation to total CN analyzed. Furthermore, the kappa-CN concentration was higher in milk from cows with the AB genotype than the AA genotype of kappa-CN. The concentrations of alpha(S1)-, beta-, and kappa-CN and of beta-LG B were found to be significant for the cheese yield, expressed as grams of cheese per one hundred grams of milk. The ratio of CN to total protein analyzed and the beta-LG B concentration positively affected cheese yield, expressed as grams of dry cheese solids per one hundred grams of milk protein, whereas beta-LG A had a negative effect. Cheese-making properties could be improved by selecting milk with high concentrations of alpha(S1)-, beta-, and kappa-CN, with high kappa-CN in relation to total CN and milk that contains beta-LG B

Published in

Journal of Dairy Science
2006, Volume: 89, number: 9, pages: 3296-3305