Given that the concentration of biogenic amines in cheeses depends on variety, age, and type of microflora, a study was undertaken to investigate the formation of these compounds during the ripening of a typical semihard Italian cheese. Tryptamine, phenylethylamine, putrescine, cadaverine, histamine, and tyramine contents were calculated in 30 samples of Montasio cheese characterized by different levels of proteolysis. Histamine and tyramine were the major amines. Tryptamine and phenylethylamine concentrations were very low at all ripening periods. Putrescine and cadaverine were present only in samples with anomalous fermentation processes. The relationship between the total amine content and the proteolytic maturation coefficient was calculated; however, even for higher levels of proteolysis, the biogenic amine content in Montasio cheese was below the level considered potentially toxic.

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