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Characterization of Pediococcus acidilactici strains isolated from rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) feed and larvae: safety, DNA fingerprinting, and bacteriocinogenicity.

  • 2016-05-03
  • Diseases of Aquatic Organisms 119(2)
    • Carlos Araújo
    • E. Muñoz-Atienza
    • P. Poeta
    • G. Igrejas
    • P. Hernández
    • C. Herranz
    • L. Cintas


The use of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) as probiotics constitutes an alternative or complementary strategy to chemotherapy and vaccination for disease control in aquaculture. The objectives of this work were (1) the in vitro safety assessment of 8 Pediococcus acidilactici strains isolated from rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss, Walbaum) feed and larvae; (2) the evaluation of their genetic relatedness; (3) the study of their antimicrobial/bacteriocin activity against fish pathogens; and (4) the biochemical and genetic characterization of the bacteriocin produced by the strain displaying the greatest antimicrobial activity. Concerning the safety assessment, none of the pediococci showed antibiotic resistance nor produced hemolysin or gelatinase, degraded gastric mucin, or deconjugated bile salts. Four strains (50%) produced tyramine or putrescine, but the corresponding genes were not amplified by PCR. Enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus-PCR (ERIC-PCR) fingerprinting allowed clustering of the pediococci into 2 well-defined groups (68% similarity). From the 8 pediococci displaying direct antimicrobial activity against at least 3 out of 9 fish pathogens, 6 strains (75%) were identified as bacteriocin producers. The bacteriocin produced by P. acidilactici L-14 was purified, and mass spectrometry and DNA sequencing revealed its identity to pediocin PA-1 (PedPA-1). Altogether, our results allowed the identification of 4 (50%) putatively safe pediococci, including 2 bacteriocinogenic strains. ERIC-PCR fingerprinting was a valuable tool for genetic profiling of P. acidilactici strains. This work reports for the first time the characterization of a PedPA-1-producing P. acidilactici strain isolated from an aquatic environment (rainbow trout larvae), which shows interesting properties related to its potential use as a probiotic in aquaculture.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Pediococcus acidilacticiAbsence of Antibiotic ResistanceBeneficial
Pediococcus acidilacticiIncreased Bacteriocin ProductionBeneficial
Pediococcus acidilacticiIncreased Tyramine ProductionHarmful
Pediococcus acidilacticiPrevented Production of Harmful SubstancesBeneficial

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