Caister Academic Press

Response of Bifidobacterium species to oxygen

Shinji Kawasaki
from: Lactic Acid Bacteria and Bifidobacteria: Current Progress in Advanced Research (Edited by: Kenji Sonomoto and Atsushi Yokota). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2011)


Members of the genus Bifidobacterium are classified as anaerobes that are known to be beneficial to human health. This group is expected to prove highly valuable for use in milk products, health promotion, and treatment of intestinal disorders. However, their sensitivity to O2 limits probiotic activity to solely anaerobic habitats. Recent research has reported that the Bifidobacterium strains exhibit various types of oxic growth. Low concentrations of O2 and CO2 can have a stimulatory effect on the growth of Bifidobacterium strains. Based on the growth profiles under different O2 concentrations, the Bifidobacterium species were classified into four classes; O2-hypersensitive, O2-sensitive, O2-tolerant, and microaerophilic. The primary factor responsible for aerobic growth inhibition is proposed to be the production of H2O2 in the growth medium. A H2O2-forming NADH oxidase was purified from O2-sensitive Bifidobacterium bifidum and was identified as a b-type dihydroorotate dehydrogenase. The kinetic parameters suggested that the enzyme could be involved in H2O2 production in highly aerated environments read more ...
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