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Analyses of the probiotic property and stress resistance-related genes of Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis NCDO 2118 through comparative genomics and in vitro assays

  • 2017-04-06
  • PLOS ONE 12(4)
    • L. C. Oliveira
    • T. Saraiva
    • W. M. Silva
    • U. Pereira
    • B. C. Campos
    • L. Benevides
    • F. Rocha
    • H. Figueiredo
    • V. Azevedo
    • S. Soares


Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis NCDO 2118 was recently reported to alleviate colitis symptoms via its anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activities, which are exerted by exported proteins that are not produced by L. lactis subsp. lactis IL1403. Here, we used in vitro and in silico approaches to characterize the genomic structure, the safety aspects, and the immunomodulatory activity of this strain. Through comparative genomics, we identified genomic islands, phage regions, bile salt and acid stress resistance genes, bacteriocins, adhesion-related and antibiotic resistance genes, and genes encoding proteins that are putatively secreted, expressed in vitro and absent from IL1403. The high degree of similarity between all Lactococcus suggests that the Symbiotic Islands commonly shared by both NCDO 2118 and KF147 may be responsible for their close relationship and their adaptation to plants. The predicted bacteriocins may play an important role against the invasion of competing strains. The genes related to the acid and bile salt stresses may play important roles in gastrointestinal tract survival, whereas the adhesion proteins are important for persistence in the gut, culminating in the competitive exclusion of other bacteria. Finally, the five secreted and expressed proteins may be important targets for studies of new anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory proteins. Altogether, the analyses performed here highlight the potential use of this strain as a target for the future development of probiotic foods.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Lactococcus lactisReduced Colitis SymptomsBeneficial
Lactococcus lactis L1A-23Reduced Colitis SymptomsBeneficial
Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactisReduced Colitis SymptomsBeneficial

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