Submitted to: Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/15/2008
Publication Date: 6/1/2008
Citation: Mantovani, H.C., Russell, J.B. 2008. Bovicin HC5, a lantibiotic produced by Streptococcus bovis HC5, catalyzed the efflux of intracellular potassium but not ATP. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. 52:2247-2249.
Interpretive Summary: Cattle in the U.S. are often fed antibiotics, but the widespread use of antibiotics in animal feed has been criticized. Antibiotics are primarily targeted against gram-positive gut bacteria. Gram-positive ruminal bacteria produce large amounts of hydrogen a precursor of methane, ammonia, a wasteful end-product of amino acid degradation, and lactic acid, an acid that causes ruminal acidosis, ruminal ulcers, founder and even death of the animal. Some bacteria produce peptides (bacteriocins) that can inhibit gram-positive bacteria, and bacteriocins have been proposed as an alternative to antibiotics. In this paper, we show that the bacteriocin, bovicin HC5, forms pores in the cells membrane of target bacteria, but the ability of the pore the translocate large intracellular metabolites (e.g. ATP) is enhanced by acidic pH. Research on bacteriocins has the potential to decrease the need for antibiotic in animal feed.
Technical Abstract: Bovicin HC5, a broad spectrum lantibiotic produced by Streptococcus bovis HC5, catalyzed the efflux of intracellular potassium from Streptococcus bovis JB1, a sensitive strain. ATP also decreased, but this decline appeared to be caused by the activity of the F1FO ATPase rather than efflux per se.