The lactic acid bacteria known by their initials (BAL) are microorganisms that in the absence of oxygen degrade carbohydrates like lactose (milk sugar), to synthesize lactic acid and energy, through a process known as lactic fermentation. In the dairy industry these microorganisms are used as lactic ferments or initiators of the lactic fermentation process for the manufacture of cheeses, yogurt, fermented milk and other products derived from milk. The type of bacterial species used as an initiator in the fermentation process is a determining factor in the nutritional quality and sensorial characteristics of the final product. The main objective of the investigation is to carry out an evaluation on the potential of sources and milk production in Panama, specifically in the Chiriquí Highlands. Regarding the scope of the research, its perspective is to continue research on the biological diversity of lactic acid bacteria present in dairy sources, for their isolation and use in the dairy industries. It is important to highlight the high production of cattle, sources and milk production in the Highlands, which represents a potential diversity of lactic acid bacteria.
Keywords: Lactic acid bacteria, lactic fermentation, probiotic foods, genetic markers, phenotype.