Novel Streptococcus infantarius subsp. infantarius variants harboring lactose metabolism genes homologous to Streptococcus thermophilus

Citation:
Jans C, Gerber A, Bugnard J, Njage PMK, Lacroix C, Meile L. "Novel Streptococcus infantarius subsp. infantarius variants harboring lactose metabolism genes homologous to Streptococcus thermophilus.". 2012.

Abstract:

Streptococcus infantarius subsp. infantarius belongs to the Streptococcus bovis/Streptococcus equinus complex (SBSEC) commonly associated with human and animal infections. We elucidated the lactose metabolism of S. infantarius subsp. infantarius predominant in African fermented milk products. S. infantarius subsp. infantarius isolates (n = 192) were identified in 88% of spontaneously fermented camel milk suusac samples (n = 24) from Kenya and Somalia at log10 8.2–8.5 CFU mL−1. African S. infantarius isolates excreted stoichiometric amounts of galactose when grown on lactose, exhibiting a metabolism similar to Streptococcusthermophilus and distinct from their type strain. African S. infantarius subsp. infantarius CJ18 harbors a regular gal operon with 99.7–100% sequence identity to S. infantarius subsp. infantarius ATCC BAA-102T and a gal-lac operon with 91.7–97.6% sequence identity to S. thermophilus, absent in all sequenced SBSEC strains analyzed. The expression and functionality of lacZ was demonstrated in a β-galactosidase assay. The gal-lac operon was identified in 100% of investigated S. infantarius isolates (n = 46) from suusac samples and confirmed in Malian fermented cow milk isolates. The African S. infantarius variant potentially evolved through horizontal gene transfer of an S. thermophilus-homologous lactose pathway. Safety assessments are needed to identify any putative health risks of this novel S. infantarius variant.

UoN Websites Search