Class IIa bacteriocins: biosynthesis, structure and activity

Authors

  • Saïd Ennahar,

    1. Laboratory of Microbial Science and Technology, Division of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Bioresource and Bioenvironmental Sciences, Kyushu University, 6-10-1 Hakozaki, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8581, Japan
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  • Toshihiro Sashihara,

    1. Laboratory of Microbial Science and Technology, Division of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Bioresource and Bioenvironmental Sciences, Kyushu University, 6-10-1 Hakozaki, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8581, Japan
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  • Kenji Sonomoto,

    1. Laboratory of Microbial Science and Technology, Division of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Bioresource and Bioenvironmental Sciences, Kyushu University, 6-10-1 Hakozaki, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8581, Japan
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  • Ayaaki Ishizaki

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratory of Microbial Science and Technology, Division of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Bioresource and Bioenvironmental Sciences, Kyushu University, 6-10-1 Hakozaki, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8581, Japan
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*Corresponding author. Tel.: +81 (92) 642 3019; Fax: +81 (92) 642 3030, E-mail address: ishizaki@agr.kyushu-u.ac.jp

Abstract

In the last decade, a variety of ribosomally synthesized antimicrobial peptides or bacteriocins produced by lactic acid bacteria have been identified and characterized. As a result of these studies, insight has been gained into fundamental aspects of biology and biochemistry such as producer self protection, membrane–protein interactions, and protein modification and secretion. Moreover, it has become evident that these peptides may be developed into useful antimicrobial additives. Class IIa bacteriocins can be considered as the major subgroup of bacteriocins from lactic acid bacteria, not only because of their large number, but also because of their activities and potential applications. They have first attracted particular attention as listericidal compounds and are now believed to be the next in line if more bacteriocins are to be approved in the future. The present review attempts to provide an insight into general knowledge available for class IIa bacteriocins and discusses common features and recent findings concerning these substances.

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