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Open AccessArticle

Red-Brown Pigmentation of Acidipropionibacterium jensenii Is Tied to Haemolytic Activity and cyl-Like Gene Cluster

1
Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
2
Department of Food Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Rolighedsvej 26, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark
3
Department of Food and Nutrition, University of Helsinki, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
4
New England Biolabs, Ipswich, MA 01938-2723, USA
5
Division of Pharmaceutical Biosciences, University of Helsinki, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Present address: Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology, Tallinn University of Technology, Akadeemia tee 15, 12618 Tallinn, Estonia.
Microorganisms 2019, 7(11), 512; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7110512
Received: 6 September 2019 / Revised: 21 October 2019 / Accepted: 29 October 2019 / Published: 30 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Food Microbiology)
The novel Acidipropionibacterium genus encompasses species of industrial importance but also those associated with food spoilage. In particular, Acidipropionibacterium acidipropionici, Acidipropionibacterium thoenii, and Acidipropionibacterium jensenii play an important role in food fermentation, as biopreservatives, or as potential probiotics. Notably, A. jensenii and A. thoenii can cause brown spot defects in Swiss-type cheeses, which have been tied to the rhamnolipid pigment granadaene. In the pathogenic bacterium Streptococcus agalactiae, production of granadaene depends on the presence of a cyl gene cluster, an important virulence factor linked with haemolytic activity. Here, we show that the production of granadaene in pigmented Acidipropionibacterium, including A. jensenii, A. thoenii, and Acidipropionibacterium virtanenii, is tied to haemolytic activity and the presence of a cyl-like gene cluster. Furthermore, we propose a PCR-based test, which allows pinpointing acidipropionibacteria with the cyl-like gene cluster. Finally, we present the first two whole genome sequence analyses of the A. jensenii strains as well as testing phenotypic characteristics important for industrial applications. In conclusion, the present study sheds light on potential risks associated with the presence of pigmented Acidipropionibacterium strains in food fermentation. In addition, the results presented here provide ground for development of a quick and simple diagnostic test instrumental in avoiding potential negative effects of Acidipropionibacterium strains with haemolytic activity on food quality. View Full-Text
Keywords: genome; haemolysis; granadaene; pigmentation; Acidipropionibacterium thoenii; Acidipropionibacterium virtanenii genome; haemolysis; granadaene; pigmentation; Acidipropionibacterium thoenii; Acidipropionibacterium virtanenii
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Deptula, P.; Loivamaa, I.; Smolander, O.-P.; Laine, P.; Roberts, R.J.; Piironen, V.; Paulin, L.; Savijoki, K.; Auvinen, P.; Varmanen, P. Red-Brown Pigmentation of Acidipropionibacterium jensenii Is Tied to Haemolytic Activity and cyl-Like Gene Cluster. Microorganisms 2019, 7, 512.

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