Genetics of Lactobacilli in Food Fermentations

Rudi F. Vogel, Matthias Ehrmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Lactobacilli play a substantial role in food biotechnology and influence our quality of life by their fermentative and probiotic properties. Despite their obvious importance in fermentation ecology and biotechnology only recent years have brought some insight into the genetics of lactobacilli. These genetic investigations allow the elucidation of traits determinative for competitiveness and ecology and thus product safety and quality. They have concentrated only on a small selection of lactobacilli whereas others are hardly touched or remained recalcitrant to genetic analysis and manipulation. The knowledge gained on the biochemistry, physiology, ecology and especially genetics is a prerequisite for the deliberate application and improved handling of lactobacilli in traditional and novel applications. In this review, the achievements in the genetics of lactobacilli are described including detection systems, genetic elements, host vector systems, gene cloning and expression and risk assessment of genetically engineered lactobacilli.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-150
Number of pages28
JournalBiotechnology Annual Review
Issue numberC
StatePublished - 1996


  • Lactobacillus
  • biosafety expression
  • food fermentation
  • gene cloning
  • genetics
  • identification
  • lactic acid bacteria
  • plasmid vector
  • starter organism
  • transformation


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