Submitted to: Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/1/2002
Publication Date: 11/1/2002
Citation: Klaenhammer, T., Altermann, E., Arigoni, F., Bolotin, A., Breidt, F., Broadbent, J., Cano, R., Chaillou, S., Deutscher, J., Gasson, M. 2002. Discovering lactic acid bacteria by genomics. Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. 82:29-58. Interpretive Summary: This journal article describes the current state of genomics for lactic acid bacteria. These bacteria are involved in a number of economically important food and industrial fermentations. Summaries were presented in this research article on sequencing of 20 different species of lactic acid bacteria carried out by scientists from around the world. A group of authors on this paper are involved in a genome sequencing consortium in the United States, to sequence the genomes of 10 (and possibly more) lactic acid bacteria. The sequencing work described for these 10 bacteria was carried out by the U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute, in Walnut Creek, California. The article discusses the practical significance, environmental habitat, and role played by selected lactic acid bacteria in a variety of commercial fermentations. The work described has the potential to revolutionize the general understanding of lactic acid bacteria genetics and metabolism, and will be of interested to most scientist working with lactic acid bacteria.
Technical Abstract: This review summarizes a collection of lactic acid bacteria that are now undergoing genomic sequencing and analysis. Summaries are presented on 20 different species, with each overview discussing the organisms fundamental and practical significance, environmental habitat, and its role in fermentation, bioprocessing, or probiotics. For those projects where genome sequence data were available by March 2002, summaries include a listing of key statistics and interesting genomic features. These efforts will revolutionize our molecular view of Gram-positive bacteria, as up to 15 genomes from the low GC content lactic acid bacteria are expected to be available in the public domain by the end of 2003. Our collective view of the lactic acid bacteria will be fundamentally changed as we rediscover the relationships and capabilities of these organisms through genomics.