Wilhelm Bockelmann

Max Rubner-Institut, Carlsruhe, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

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Publications (62)101.85 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Bacteria belonging to the genus Lactobacillus are used as starter cultures or that develop naturally as fermenting microbiota in the production of various foods. On the detrimental side, lactobacilli may act as reservoir of antibiotic resistance genes, which can spread to commensal bacteria in humans or animals, or to food-associated pathogens. In the last decade, advances in molecular biology and in genome sequencing have provided more information on antibiotic resistances in foodborne bacteria. The aim of this review was to consider and provide an up-to-date status on phenotypic and genotypic antibiotic resistance profiles in Lactobacillus species from fermented foods and also to highlight new information on the distribution of glycopeptide and chloramphenicol resistance genes in Lactobacillus genomes. In silico screening of vanZ (vancomycin resistance) and cat (chloramphenicol resistance)-like sequences in Lactobacillus species isolated from fermented foods revealed for the first time the occurrence of vanZ and cat genes in Lactobacillus species being highly conserved genes in the chromosome of each species, presumably non-transferable. Further studies involving genome sequences of Lactobacillus isolated from fermented foods, especially those relying on spontaneous fermentation, is crucial to increase knowledge on the potential presence and spread of antibiotic resistance genes via the food route.
    Food Research International 09/2015; in press, available online. DOI:10.1016/j.foodres.2015.09.016 · 2.82 Impact Factor
  • D Ghadimi · M Ebsen · J Kabisch · C Röcken · MH Moghadasian · KJ Heller · W Bockelmann · C Franz ·

    Zeitschrift für Gastroenterologie; 09/2015
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    ABSTRACT: A systematic investigation was carried out on the influence of fermentation on glucosinolates and their degradation products from fresh raw cabbage, throughout fermentation at 20 �C and storage at 4 �C. Glucosinolates were degraded dramatically between Day 2 and 5 of fermentation and by Day 7 there was no detectable amount of glucosinolates left. Fermentation led to formation of potential bioactive compounds ascorbigen (13.0 lmol/100 g FW) and indole-3-carbinol (4.52 lmol/100 g FW) with their higher concentrations from Day 5 to Day 9. However, during storage indole-3-carbinol slowly degraded to 0.68 lmol/100 g FW, while ascorbigen was relatively stable from Week 4 until Week 8 at 6.78 lmol/100 g FW. In contrast, the content of indole-3-acetonitrile decreased rapidly during fermentation from 3.6 to 0.14 lmol/100 g FW. The results imply a maximum of health beneficial compounds after fermentation (7–9 days) in contrast to raw cabbage or stored sauerkraut.
    Food Chemistry 06/2015; 190:755-762. DOI:10.1016/j.foodchem.2015.06.012 · 3.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Bacteria assigned to the genus Weissella are Gram-positive, catalase-negative, non-endospore forming cells with coccoid or rod-shaped morphology (Collins et al., 1993; Björkroth et al., 2009, 2014) and belong to the group of bacteria generally known as lactic acid bacteria. Phylogenetically, the Weissella belong to the Firmicutes, class Bacilli, order Lactobacillales and family Leuconostocaceae (Collins et al., 1993). They are obligately heterofermentative, producing CO2 from carbohydrate metabolism with either D(−)-, or a mixture of D(−)- and L(+)- lactic acid and acetic acid as major end products from sugar metabolism. To date, there are 19 validly described Weissella species known. Weissella spp. have been isolated from and occur in a wide range of habitats, e.g., on the skin and in the milk and feces of animals, from saliva, breast milk, feces and vagina of humans, from plants and vegetables, as well as from a variety of fermented foods such as European sourdoughs and Asian and African traditional fermented foods. Thus, apart from a perceived technical role of certain Weissella species involved in such traditional fermentations, specific Weissella strains are also receiving attention as potential probiotics, and strain development of particularly W. cibaria strains is receiving attention because of their high probiotic potential for controlling periodontal disease. Moreover, W. confusa and W. cibaria strains are known to produce copius amounts of novel, non-digestible oligosaccharides and extracellular polysaccharides, mainly dextran. These polymers are receiving increased attention for their potential application as prebiotics and for a wide range of industrial applications, predominantly for bakeries and for the production of cereal-based fermented functional beverages. On the detrimental side, strains of certain Weissella species, e.g., of W. viridescens, W. cibaria and W. confusa, are known as opportunistic pathogens involved in human infections while strains of W. ceti have been recently recongnized as etiological agent of “weissellosis,” which is a disease affecting farmed rainbow trouts. Bacteria belonging to this species thus are important both from a technological, as well as from a medical point of view, and both aspects should be taken into account in any envisaged biotechnological applications.
    Frontiers in Microbiology 02/2015; 6(155). DOI:10.3389/fmicb.2015.00155 · 3.99 Impact Factor
  • D Ghadimi · M de Vrese · KJ Heller · M Paulsen · P Rosenstiel · W Bockelmann ·

    Zeitschrift für Gastroenterologie; 09/2014
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction Non alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), defined by accumulation of triglycerides in hepatocytes in the absence of alcohol consumption, is associated with obesity. Evidences so far suggest that ethanol produced by gut microbial strains may be implicated in this metabolic disease. Methods In vitro fermentation under anaerobic conditions in medium for colonic bacteria (MCB), supplemented with fructose, was applied for evaluating metabolite profiles of the heterofermentative lactic acid bacteria (htLAB) Weissella confusa and Lactobacillus fermentum in absence or presence of sodium citrate, sodium pyruvate, ribose or xylose. Results and Discussion Results obtained showed that in the absence of electron acceptors (citrate, pyruvate), lactate was the major metabolite of W. confusa and L. fermentum. High amounts of ethanol were produced by W. confusa in MCB supplemented with fructose. In contrast, L. fermentum produced high amounts of mannitol in the same medium. Lactate and acetate were the major metabolites of xylose or ribose fermentation by W. confusa and L. fermentum. Changes of fructose fermentation profiles were observed when citrate or pyruvate was added to the medium: besides lactate, succinate and acetate became the major metabolites of W. confusa and L. fermentum. Co-fermentation of both pentoses with fructose by W. confusa or L. fermentum resulted in decreased amounts of ethanol and increased amounts of lactate and acetate. Our data show that citrate and pyruvate may act as electron acceptors for NAD regeneration in htLAB resulting in decreased amounts of ethanol. Furthermore, fermentation by htLAB of pentoses instead of hexoses increases production of acetate at the expense of ethanol. Conclusion Consumption of natural sources or supplementation of diet with citrate, pyruvate or xylose could reduce production of ethanol by intestinal microbiota and thus may decrease the risk of NAFLD.
    2013 EFFoST Annual Meeting: Bio-based Technologies in the Context of European Food Innovation Systems, Bologna, Italy; 11/2013
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    ABSTRACT: I. Einleitung Nichtalkoholische Fettleber (NAFLD) ist definiert als „Fettanhäufung von Triglyceriden in 5 - 10% des Lebergewichts“ (Neuschwander-Teri & Caldwell, 2003) und mit Zeichen des metabolischen Syndroms assoziiert. Einige Studien legen nahe, dass die Darmmikrobiota, hauptsächlich Ethanol produzierende und Gram-negative Bakterien, für die Entwicklung der NAFLD eine Rolle spielen könnte (Nardone et al., 2004). II. Ziele der Arbeit In dieser Arbeit sollte untersucht werden, ob Elektronenakzeptoren (Natriumcitrat oder Natriumpyruvat) die Metaboliten-Profile ausgewählter Stämme der Darmflora und von Probiotika verändern können und inwieweit sich hierin Bakterien unterscheiden. III. Methodik Bakterielle Fermentationen wurden in Wachstumsmedium unter Sauerstoffausschluss durchgeführt. Metabolitenprofile wurden mittels HPLC analysiert. IV. Ergebnisse • Lactobacillus fermentum produziert große Mengen an Ethanol aus Glukose und an Mannit aus Fruktose. • Weissella confusa (Isolat aus menschlichen Darm) produziert große Mengen an Ethanol aus Monosacchariden (Glukose oder Fruktose). • Bei Zusatz von Natriumcitrat oder Natriumpyruvat zu Wachstumsmedium, änderten sich die Metaboliten-Profile erheblich. • Neben Laktat stellten Succinat und Acetat die Hauptmetaboliten für W. confusa und L. fermentum bei Zusatz von Citrat oder Pyruvat dar. V. Folgerung Supplementierung mit Citrat oder Pyruvat konnte die Produktion von Ethanol durch Stämme der Darmflora reduzieren. Im Fall des L. fermentum führte der Austausch von Glukose gegen Fruktose zur Verringerung der Ethanol Produktion. Mögliche Implikationen für die NAFLD werden diskutiert.
    6. Symposium Funktionelle Lebensmittel 2013; 06/2013
  • Knut J Heller · Wilhelm Bockelmann · Elke Brockmann ·

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    S Peng · W Hoffmann · W Bockelmann · J Hummerjohann · R Stephan · P Hammer ·
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    ABSTRACT: The fate of 5 different Escherichia coli strains, including 3 Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) strains, was analyzed during the production and ripening of semihard raw milk cheese. The strains, which were previously isolated from raw milk cheese, were spiked into raw milk before cheese production at 2 different levels (approximately 10(1) and 10(3) cfu/mL, respectively). Two cheese types were produced, which differed in cooking temperatures (40 and 46°C). The cheeses were sampled during manufacture and the 16-wk ripening period. An increase in E. coli counts of approximately 3.5 log(10) cfu/g occurred from raw milk to fresh cheese at d 1, which was attributed to a concentration effect during cheese production and growth of the strains. During ripening over 16 wk, a slow, continuous decrease was observed for all strains. However, significant differences were found between the E. coli strains at the applied spiking levels, whereas the inactivation was similar in the 2 different cheese types. The 2 generic E. coli strains survived at higher counts than did the 3 STEC strains. Nevertheless, only 1 of the 3 STEC strains showed significantly weaker survival at both spiking levels and in both cheese types. Six of 16 cheeses made from raw milk at a low spiking level contained more than 10 cfu/g of STEC at the end of the 16-wk ripening process. After enrichment, STEC were detected in almost all cheeses at both spiking levels. Particularly because of the low infectious dose of highly pathogenic STEC, even low colony counts in raw milk cheese are a matter of concern.
    Journal of Dairy Science 12/2012; 96(2). DOI:10.3168/jds.2012-5865 · 2.57 Impact Factor
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    Elshaghabee F.M.F. · Bockelmann W. · Schrezenmeir J. · Heller K.J. ·
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    ABSTRACT: People suffering from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) show - without any consumption of alcohol - all signs of a typical alcohol-induced fatty liver. So far the elicitor of NAFLD remains unclear. However, alcohol produced by the intestinal microbiota has been discussed to be involved in the development of the disease. In order to take a closer look at this problem, a simple fermentation model was established for evaluating strains intestinal and lactic acid bacteria. So far, we analysed Anaerostipes caccae, Bacteroides thetaiotamicron, Bifidobacterium longum, Escherichia coli, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus fermentum, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus reuteri with respect to their metabolic activities. Medium for colonic bacteria (MCB), supplemented with different sugars like glucose, fructose, lactulose, arabinose, ribose and inulin was used under anaerobic conditions.The results obtained generally reflected the anticipated metabolic activities. Lactate was the major metabolite for all lactobacilli strains. High amounts of ethanol were observed in L. fermentum and L. reuteri, grown in MCB supplemented with either glucose or fructose. Lactate and acetate were the major metabolites of B. longum, however succinate and acetate were the major metabolic substances of B. thetaiotamicron. On the other hand, butyrate was only the major metabolite of A. caccae in all tested sugars except inulin. E. coli showed mixed acid fermentation with different amount of ethanol from all tested sugars except inulin. Fermentation of lactulose and inulin, two potential prebiotics, could reduce the production of ethanol by the intestinal bacteria. We now plan to conduct co-fermentation experiments to see, whether combinations of different bacteria will change the overall metabolic profiles in general and the production of ethanol in particular. Key words: lactobacilli, Bacteroides thetaiotamicron, fructose, prebiotic, probiotic, intestinal microbiota
    2 nd Kiel Food Science Symposium, Kiel, Germany; 05/2012
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    G Vinderola · M F Zacarías · W Bockelmann · H Neve · J Reinheimer · K J Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this work was to investigate how production and freeze-drying conditions of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis INL1, a probiotic strain isolated from breast milk, affected its survival and resistance to simulated gastric digestion during storage in food matrices. The determination of the resistance of bifidobacteria to simulated gastric digestion was useful for unveiling differences in cell sensitivity to varying conditions during biomass production, freeze-drying and incorporation of the strain into food products. These findings show that bifidobacteria can become sensitive to technological variables (biomass production, freeze-drying and the food matrix) without this fact being evidenced by plate counts.
    Food Microbiology 05/2012; 30(1):274-80. DOI:10.1016/j.fm.2011.12.004 · 3.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Screening of 175 yeasts in an agar plate co-cultivation assay revealed that five out of 31 species reduced Listeria monocytogenes by 4–5 log units, one exceptionally active Pichia norvegensis reduced Listeria by 7 log units. To test the anti-listerial activity of this Pichia strain on cheese, Tilsit cheese and smeared acid curd cheese (Harzer) were prepared. The Tilsit cheese surface was inoculated with a 3%-NaCl brine containing Brevibacterium linens, Microbacterium gubbeenense, Corynebacterium casei, Staphylococcus equorum, Debaryomyces hansenii, P. norvegensis and L. monocytogenes. Ripening was done at 13 °C and >95% relative humidity. On the Tilsit, but not on the Harzer cheeses, a decrease of listerial cell numbers by 1–2 log units was observed. The difference between high inhibition in agar plate co-cultivation versus cheese is probably due to a decreased expression of the unknown inhibitory substance due to lactate, but not by the low pH.
    International Dairy Journal 02/2011; 21(2-21):83-89. DOI:10.1016/j.idairyj.2010.08.002 · 2.01 Impact Factor
  • P N Njeru · N Rösch · D Ghadimi · A Geis · W Bockelmann · M de Vrese · J Schrezenmeir · K J Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of the study was to isolate potential probiotic lactobacilli from Kimere, a pearl millet dough prepared in the Mbeere community of Kenya, East Africa, by fermentation for 18-24 hours. Kimere samples, collected from 11 different homesteads in Mbeere, showed average pH values of 3.63±0.29. Counts of presumptive lactobacilli were 8.52±0.02 log10 colony forming units per gram, respectively. 48 presumptive Lactobacillus isolates were characterised and identified by biochemical and molecular methods. Lactobacillus fermentum (46 isolates) was the dominant Lactobacillus species detected. Analysis of strain diversity with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis indicated relatively large biodiversity among L. fermentum isolates. All L. fermentum isolates were able to grow in MRS medium containing 0.3% ox gall. Twelve of them were able to grow in the presence of 3% ox gall, and of these 60% survived incubation at pH 3 in the presence of 2 mg pepsin per ml for three hours.
    Beneficial Microbes 09/2010; 1(3):243-52. DOI:10.3920/BM2010.0019 · 2.61 Impact Factor
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    Wilhelm Bockelmann · Michael Heller · Knut J. Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: Amplified ribosomal DNA restriction analysis was used for classification of 90 yeast strains of 32 species of dairy origin. Primers ITS1 and ITS4 yielded PCR products in the range 375bp (Candida lipolytica) to 915bp (Schizosaccharomyces pombe). Species-specific restriction products were liberated by the enzymes Hin6I, HinfI and BsuRI. Some species showed genetic variation, leading to PCR products of different sizes (Debaryomyces hansenii, C. lipolytica, Candida inconspicua, Candida sake). Restriction patterns of three Trichosporon species were similar; a species determination was possible by including Trichosporon reference strains on the gels. Candida krusei, an essential ripening culture of acid curd cheese, could be distinguished from Candida norvegensis and C. inconspicua. C. lipolytica, an important contaminant of smear cheeses, could be classified by the size of the PCR product and restriction patterns. The method provides a fast and reliable tool for identification of dairy yeasts. Size determination of the PCR products gives a narrow range of possible species, while subsequent restriction analysis allows accurate species classification of relevant dairy yeasts.
    International Dairy Journal 10/2008; 18(10):1066-1071. DOI:10.1016/j.idairyj.2008.05.008 · 2.01 Impact Factor
  • Knut J Heller · Wilhelm Bockelmann · Jürgen Schrezenmeir · Michael de Vrese ·

    Fermented Functional Foods, 2nd edited by E. Farnworth, 01/2008: pages 243-266; CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group LLC, Boca Raton., ISBN: 9781420053265
  • Claudia Möller · Wilhelm Bockelmann · Andreas Ammann · Knut J Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: In this communication, we describe the isolation of a Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus 92063 mutant strain named pH-P11, which differed from the parent strain by low proteolytic activity and altered regulation of expression of lacZ in the presence of glucose or lactose. In the presence of lactose, beta-galactosidase activity was approximately twice as high in pH-P11 than in the wild type. pH-P11 exhibited protosymbiosis together with Streptococcus thermophilus. Yoghurt produced with pH-P11 was characterized by low acidity and little post-acidification during storage. The organoleptic properties (absence of bitterness and other off-flavors, weak sourness, and clear yoghurt taste) were those of a typical "yoghurt mild". This mild flavor was achieved at rather high cell counts of lactobacilli even at the end of shelf-life. High cell counts in conjunction with high beta-galactosidase activity make pH-P11 an interesting strain for application in yoghurt especially designed for consumers with lactose malabsorption. In contrast to "yoghurt mild", which is predominantly produced with Lactobacillus acidophilus together with Streptococcus thermophilus, the product obtained by fermentation with pH-P11 and Streptococcus thermophilus concurs with international standards for yoghurt. During frequent sub-culturing, strain pH-P11, which is supposed to differ from the wild type by one or a few so-far-not-characterized mutations, showed sufficient stability for application in industrial production.
    Biotechnology Journal 04/2007; 2(4):469-79. DOI:10.1002/biot.200600225 · 3.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Amplified ribosomal DNA restriction enzyme analysis (ARDRA), pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and ribotyping were used to differentiate among 24 strains of Brevibacterium linens, Brevibacterium casei and Brevibacterium epidermidis obtained from type culture collections or isolated from various smear ripened cheeses. ARDRA was applied to the 16S rDNA. B. linens was shown to be a quite heterogenic group with 2 to at least 4 copies of rrn operons per strain with aberrant nucleotide sequences. AccI gave genus specific restriction patterns and was used to separate Brevibacterium from Corynebacterium species. The expected species specificity of TaqI applied to B. linens type culture strains, but not to all strains isolated from cheese. By AvaI restriction, B. casei and B. linens were differentiated from B. epidermidis and the orange pigmented Arthrobacter casei, a new species of coryneform bacteria; by XmnI restriction, B. linens and B. epidermidis were differentiated from B. casei. One of 4 B. linens genotypes could not be distinguished from B. casei by this method. Here, the typical orange B. linens pigments were used for classification, which was confirmed by partial sequencing of the 16S rDNA.
    Systematic and Applied Microbiology 02/2007; 30(1):50-7. DOI:10.1016/j.syapm.2006.02.008 · 3.28 Impact Factor
  • Bikash C Gosh · Wilhelm Bockelmann · Knut J Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: Enzymes produced by micro-organisms present on the surface of smear-ripened cheeses play a major role for the development of flavor and body and texture of the cheeses. Ten frequently found micro-organisms on the surface of smear-ripened cheeses were identified and studied for their extra- and intracellular proteinase, aminopeptidase and lipase activities. Two strains of Brevibacterium linens, Arthrobacter nicotianae and Microbacterium gubbeenense showed significant (p<0.05) high extracellular proteinase activities. Highest (70 mUnits) intracellular proteinase activity was observed for Geotrichum candidum, followed by two strains of 6. linens. Intracellular proteinase activities of all the organisms were very low in comparison to extracellular activities. However, aminopeptidase activity behaved quite differently. Extracellular aminopeptidase activities of all the organisms were found to be much lower than intracellular activities. Maximum (0.51 units/mg) aminopeptidase activity was observed in mixed cultures, indicating their significant contribution in cheese ripening, whereas intracellular activities were maximum (295 units/mg) in Debaryomyces hansenii followed by A. nicotianae and M. gubbeenense. The protein content of extracellular extracts was highest in Corynebacterium casei (0.86 mg/mL), whereas protein content of intracellular extracts was highest (9.65 mg/mL) in D. hansenii, followed by Staphylococcus equorum and Corynebacterium variabile. A. nicotianae showed the highest lipase activity in a tributyrin agar diffusion assay. Lipase activities of extracellular enzymes on fluorogenic substrate showed significant differences, but intracellular enzymes of the organisms were found to be non significant. However, maximum extra- and intracellular lipase activities were observed in A. nicotianae and B. linens, respectively.
    Australian Journal of Dairy Technology 10/2006; 61(3):238-243. · 0.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To assess which types of siderophores are typically produced by Brevibacterium and how siderophore production and utilization traits are distributed within this genus. During co-cultivation experiments it was found that growth of B. linens Br5 was stimulated by B. linens NIZO B1410 by two orders of magnitude. The stimulation was caused by the production of hydroxamate siderophores by B. linens NIZO B1410 that enabled the siderophore-auxotrophic strain Br5 to grow faster under the applied iron-limited growth conditions. Different patterns of siderophore production and utilization were observed within the genus Brevibacterium. These patterns did not reflect the phylogenetic relations within the group as determined by partial 16S rDNA sequencing. Most Brevibacterium strains were found to utilize hydroxamate siderophores. Brevibacteria can produce and utilize siderophores although certain strains within this genus are siderophore-auxotrophic. It is reported for the first time that brevibacteria produce and utilize siderophores. This knowledge can be utilized to stimulate growth of auxotrophic strains under certain conditions. Enhancing the growth rate of Brevibacterium is of importance for the application of this species, for example, for cheese manufacturing or for industrial production of enzymes or metabolites.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 10/2006; 101(3):637-46. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2672.2006.02928.x · 2.48 Impact Factor
  • Wilhelm Bockelmann · Sabine Golecki · Bernhard Henrich · Ulrich Wegmann · Knut J Heller ·
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    ABSTRACT: The four peptidase genes pepG, pepW, pepl, and pepQ from Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. lactis DSM7290 were expressed in Lactococcus lactis MG1363 (pLP712: prt+, lac+), which was used as single strain starter for cheese production. Only the L. lactis pepl+ derivative showed clear overexpression of the additional Lactobacillus gene compared to the unmodified Lactococcus control strain. Cheeses produced with these strains showed similar chemical and physical parameters between mutant and control cheeses. The starter counts indicated no or little lysis after 5 and 10 weeks of ripening. Free peptidase activities in cheese showed no differences compared to control except for cheeses produced with the pepl derivative of L. lactis. The total amino acid concentrations of all "mutant" cheeses was higher than for controls, no clear effect was seen for the concentration of oligopeptides. The amino acid compositions were similar for all experimental cheeses and could not be related e.g. to the expression of proline specific peptidases. Sensory analysis of the cheese showed that the starters with Lactobacillus peptidase genes gave more bitter and less salty cheeses. Other aroma criteria were not clearly different from controls.
    Kieler Milchwirtschaftliche Forschungsberichte 06/2006; 58(2):93-107.

Publication Stats

1k Citations
101.85 Total Impact Points


  • 2011-2012
    • Max Rubner-Institut
      Carlsruhe, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
  • 2007-2010
    • Federal Agency for Agriculture and Food (Germany)
      Berlín, Berlin, Germany
  • 1991
    • Eawag: Das Wasserforschungs-Institut des ETH-Bereichs
      Duebendorf, Zurich, Switzerland