Lactococcus lactis is a Gram-positive bacteria, which belongs to the group of lactic acid bacteria among which several genera play an essential role in the manufacture of food products. Cytosolic proteins of L. lactis IL1403 cultivated in M17 broth have been resolved by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis using two pH gradients (pH 4–7, 4.5–5.5). More than 230 spots were identified by peptide mass fingerprints, corresponding to 25% of the predicted acid proteome. The present study made it possible to describe at the proteome level a significant number of cellular pathways (glycolysis, fermentation, nucleotide metabolism, proteolysis, fatty acid and peptidoglycan synthesis) related to important physiological processes and technological properties. It also indicated that the fermentative metabolism, which characterizes L. lactis is associated with a high expression of glycolytic enzymes. Thirty-four proteins were matched to open reading frames for which there is no assigned function. The comparison at the proteome level of two strains of L. lactis showed an important protein polymorphism. The comparison of the proteomes of glucose- and lactose-grown cells revealed an unexpected link between the nature of the carbon source and the metabolism of pyrimidine nucleotides.