The vaginal microbiota, normally characterized by lactobacilli presence, is crucial for vaginal health. Members belonging to L. crispatus and L. gasseri species exert crucial protective functions against pathogens, although a total comprehension of factors that influence their dominance in healthy women is still lacking. Here we investigated the complete genome sequence and comprehensive phenotypic profile of L. crispatus strain BC5 and L. gasseri strain BC12, two vaginal strains featured by antibacterial and anti-viral activities. Phenotype microarray (PM) results revealed an improved capacity of BC5 to utilize different carbon sources as compared to BC12, although some specific carbon sources that can be associated to the human diet were only metabolized by BC12, i.e. uridine, amygdalin, tagatose. Additionally, the two strains were mostly distinct in the capacity to utilize the nitrogen sources under analysis. On the other hand, BC12 showed the tolerance/resistance towards twice the number of stressors (i.e. antibiotics, toxic metals etc.) with respect to BC5. The divergent phenotypes observed in PM were supported by the identification in either BC5 or BC12 of specific genetic determinants that were found to be part of the core genome of each species. The PM results in combination with comparative genome data provide insights into the possible environmental factors and genetic traits supporting the predominance of either L. crispatus BC5 or L. gasseri BC12 in the vaginal niche, giving also indications for metabolic predictions at the species level.

Insight into phenotypic and genotypic differences between vaginal Lactobacillus crispatus BC5 and Lactobacillus gasseri BC12 to unravel nutritional and stress factors influencing their metabolic activity

Paolo Emidio Costantini
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Andrea Firrincieli;Stefano Fedi;Carola Parolin;Martina Cappelletti
;
Beatrice Vitali
2021

Abstract

The vaginal microbiota, normally characterized by lactobacilli presence, is crucial for vaginal health. Members belonging to L. crispatus and L. gasseri species exert crucial protective functions against pathogens, although a total comprehension of factors that influence their dominance in healthy women is still lacking. Here we investigated the complete genome sequence and comprehensive phenotypic profile of L. crispatus strain BC5 and L. gasseri strain BC12, two vaginal strains featured by antibacterial and anti-viral activities. Phenotype microarray (PM) results revealed an improved capacity of BC5 to utilize different carbon sources as compared to BC12, although some specific carbon sources that can be associated to the human diet were only metabolized by BC12, i.e. uridine, amygdalin, tagatose. Additionally, the two strains were mostly distinct in the capacity to utilize the nitrogen sources under analysis. On the other hand, BC12 showed the tolerance/resistance towards twice the number of stressors (i.e. antibiotics, toxic metals etc.) with respect to BC5. The divergent phenotypes observed in PM were supported by the identification in either BC5 or BC12 of specific genetic determinants that were found to be part of the core genome of each species. The PM results in combination with comparative genome data provide insights into the possible environmental factors and genetic traits supporting the predominance of either L. crispatus BC5 or L. gasseri BC12 in the vaginal niche, giving also indications for metabolic predictions at the species level.
Paolo Emidio Costantini, Andrea Firrincieli, Stefano Fedi, Carola Parolin, Carlo Viti, Martina Cappelletti, Beatrice Vitali
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/819382
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