Journal Article

Safety issues of <i>Lactobacillus bulgaricus</i> with respect to human gelatinases <i>in vitro</i>

Iva Stamatova, Jukka H. Meurman, Kirsti Kari, Taina Tervahartiala, Timo Sorsa and Maria Baltadjieva

in FEMS Immunology & Medical Microbiology

Published on behalf of Federation of Microbiological Societies

Volume 51, issue 1, pages 194-200
Published in print October 2007 | ISSN: 0928-8244
Published online July 2007 | e-ISSN: 1574-695X | DOI:
Safety issues of Lactobacillus bulgaricus with respect to human gelatinases in vitro

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In oral medicine and dentistry probiotics have shown promising results in controlling dental diseases and yeast infections. This study was made to investigate the effect of eight strains of Lactobacillus bulgaricus and their effects on human matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9). The hypothesis was that these bacteria used in yoghurt production for centuries are not proteolytic and thus can be safely used in the development of probiotic preparations. Bacterial cell fractions and supernatant specimens were prepared and studied with gelatinase zymography and MMP-9 activation was assessed by immunoblotting. The effect of synthetic MMP inhibitors and a serine protease inhibitor (Pefabloc) on bacterial proteinases was studied with zymography. The results showed very low gelatinolytic activity. There was a slight difference between the supernatant and cell fractions so that the supernatant specimens produced weak gelatinolytic bands in zymography while hardly anything was seen in the cell fraction series. The tested synthetic MMP inhibitors and Pefabloc did not affect the proteolytic activity of the lactobacilli strains. The lactobacilli did not seem to induce the conversion of proMMP-9 to its active form. Consequently, our study hypothesis was confirmed and the studied Lactobacillus strains are not likely to degrade host tissue components.

Keywords: probiotics; L. bulgaricusx; matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs); oral cavity

Journal Article.  4260 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Microbiology and Virology ; Biotechnology ; Genetics and Genomics ; Microbiology ; Molecular and Cell Biology

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