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Differences in Carbohydrates Utilization and Antibiotic Resistance Between Streptococcus macedonicus and Streptococcus thermophilus Strains Isolated from Dairy Products in Italy

Tarrah, Armin, Treu, Laura, Giaretta, Sabrina, Duarte, Vinicius, Corich, Viviana, Giacomini, Alessio
Current microbiology 2018 v.75 no.10 pp. 1334-1344
Streptococcus macedonicus, Streptococcus thermophilus, antibiotic resistance, antimicrobial properties, dairy products, drugs, foods, fructose, galactose, gentamicin, glucose, growth models, inulin, lactose, logit analysis, prebiotics, starter cultures, xylose, Italy
Streptococcus thermophilus and S. macedonicus are the only two species of the genus related to food productions so far known. In the present study, eight S. thermophilus and seven S. macedonicus strains isolated from dairy environments in Italy were compared in order to evidence possible species-specific technological characteristics. Their capability to use lactose, galactose, fructose, and glucose, sugars commonly present in foods and two carbohydrates considered as prebiotics, xylose and inulin, along with the respective growth kinetics were studied. Results showed a luxuriant growth on lactose and different behaviors on galactose, glucose, and fructose. No growth on inulin and xylose was recorded, which is a positive feature for strains intended to be used as starter cultures. Growth parameters, namely, λ, µₘₐₓ, and Nₘₐₓ, were estimated by using the Gompertz model. Antibiotic resistance to 14 drugs revealed an overall similar behavior between the two species with only a marked difference regarding gentamycin. Antimicrobial activity was also tested against six deleterious bacterial strains, but none of the strains evidenced inhibitory capabilities. The results presented here could be helpful to compare technological potentialities of the two species and to choose strains of the most suitable species for selected microbiological food transformations.