Comparative and functional genomics of lactococci.

FEMS Microbiol Rev. 2005 Aug;29(3):411-33.

Comparative and functional genomics of lactococci.

Kok J, Buist G, Zomer AL, van Hijum SA, Kuipers OP.

Department of Molecular Genetics, Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute, University of Groningen, Kerklaan 30, 9751 NN Haren, The Netherlands. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Whole-genome nucleotide sequencing has revolutionized the genetic, biochemical and molecular biology research on bacteria and indeed, many higher organisms. The genome sequences of the strains of two subspecies of Lactococcus lactis, L. lactis subsp. lactis and L. lactis subsp. cremoris, have been determined. These genomic sequences have permitted two important new approaches to be applied in the research of L. lactis. The analysis of the regulation of expression of all genes under specific circumstances at a given point in time is now possible by DNA microarray technology. The elucidation of the full protein complement of the organism as a function of intrinsic or external factors has been made possible by high-throughput protein identification and analysis techniques combined with the gene-derived know-how of the total protein encoding capacity of the genome. These techniques from the genomics arena, transcriptomics and proteomics, have been recently implemented in the study of various aspects of growth and functioning of L. lactis. In this paper we discuss a number of similarities and differences between the two lactococcal genome sequences and review the current status of genomics research in L. lactis. We also propose future directions with respect to both answering fundamental questions more quickly and more completely, as well as opening new avenues for biotechnological applications.


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