Strains of Lactobacillus sakei can be isolated from a variety of sources including meat, fermented sausages, sake, sourdough, sauerkraut or kimchi. Selected strains are widely used as starter cultures for sausage fermentation. Recently we have demonstrated that control about the lactic microbiota in fermenting sausages is achieved rather by pairs or strain sets than by single strains. In this work we characterized the pan genome of L. sakei to enable exploitation of the genomic diversity of L. sakei for the establishment of assertive starter strain sets. We have established the full genome sequences of nine L. sakei strains from different sources of isolation and included in the analysis the genome of L. sakei 23K. Comparative genomics revealed an accessory genome comprising about 50% of the pan genome and different lineages of strains with no relation to their source of isolation. Group and strain specific differences could be found, which namely referred to agmatine and citrate metabolism. The presence of genes encoding metabolic pathways for fructose, sucrose and trehalose as well as gluconate in all strains suggests a general adaptation to plant/sugary environments and a life in communities with other genera. Analysis of the plasmidome did not reveal any specific mechanisms of adaptation to a habitat. The predicted differences of metabolic settings enable prediction of partner strains, which can occupy the meat environment to a large extent and establish competitive exclusion of autochthonous microbiota. This may assist the development of a new generation of meat starter cultures containing L. sakei strains. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
Journal: Microbiological research