Side-stream lignins: Potential antioxidant and antimicrobial agents in milk

Crisiane A. Marangon, Caio G. Otoni, Paula C. Bertuso, Patrícia F. Rossi, Danilo M. dos Santos, Tainise V. Lourençon, Virginia C.A. Martins, Ana Maria G. Plepis, Luiz H.C. Mattoso, Marcia Nitschke*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


In recent years, lignin has drawn increasing attention due to its intrinsic antibacterial and antioxidant activities, biodegradability, and biocompatibility. Yet, like several other biogenic structures, its compositional heterogeneity represents a challenge to overcome. In addition, there are few studies regarding food applications of lignin. Herein, we evaluate the antimicrobial and antioxidant effects of lignin from two different sources. These lignins were characterized by attenuated total reflectance Fourier-transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) and hydrogen nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) spectroscopies. Their antibacterial and antioxidant capacities (DPPH and Folin-Ciocalteu methods) were also investigated. Susceptibility tests were performed with the minimal inhibitory (MIC) and bactericidal (MBC) concentrations using the micro-broth dilution technique. Kraft lignin presented higher radical-scavenging and antibacterial activities than alkali lignin, indicating the dependence of antioxidant and antibacterial activities on the precursor biomass. Scanning electron microscopy shows morphologic changes in the bacteria after exposure to lignin, while confocal microscopy suggests that kraft lignin has affinity towards bacterial surfaces and the ability to cause cell membrane destabilization. Lignin inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus and Salmonella Enteritidis in skimmed milk, herein taken as food model. Our results suggest that lignins are promising candidates for green additives to improve quality and safety within the food chain.

Original languageEnglish
Article number114091
Early online date12 Feb 2024
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2024
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Antibacterial activity
  • Milk
  • Radical scavenging
  • Technical lignin


Dive into the research topics of 'Side-stream lignins: Potential antioxidant and antimicrobial agents in milk'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this