• Enterococcus sp.;
  • Cheese;
  • Vancomycin resistance;
  • Virulence factors

Species distribution, virulence traits and vancomycin resistance gene profiles of Enterococcus isolated from 43 home-made artisan cheese samples collected from open markets, located in Aydin region of Turkey, were investigated. Of the 129 isolates, 95 were identified as Enterococcus sp.; Enterococcus faecium being the most prevalent species (82.1%), followed by Enterococcus faecalis (13.6%) and Enterococcus durans (1.0%). None of the enterococci were harbouring vanA or vanC, while seven isolates (7.3%) were shown to harbour vanB gene by multiplex PCR. gelE (49.4%) being the most prevalent virulence factor was followed by asa1 (27.3%), esp (22.1%), cylA (4.2%) and hyl (3.1%).