• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of aemPermissionsJournals.ASM.orgJournalAEM ArticleJournal InfoAuthorsReviewers
Appl Environ Microbiol. Jul 1979; 38(1): 72–77.
PMCID: PMC243437

Effect of Monensin and Lasalocid-Sodium on the Growth of Methanogenic and Rumen Saccharolytic Bacteria


It is thought that monensin increases the efficiency of feed utilization by cattle by altering the rumen fermentation. We studied the effect of monensin and the related ionophore antibiotic lasalocid-sodium (Hoffman-LaRoche) on the growth of methanogenic and rumen saccharolytic bacteria in a complex medium containing rumen fluid. Ruminococcus albus, Ruminococcus flavefaciens, and Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens were inhibited by 2.5 μg of monensin or lasalocid per ml. Growth of Bacteroides succinogenes and Bacteroides ruminicola was delayed by 2.5 μg of monensin or lasalocid per ml. Populations of B. succinogenes and B. ruminicola that were resistant to 20 μg of either drug per ml were rapidly selected by growth in the presence of each drug at 5.0 μg/ml. Selenomonas ruminantium was insensitive to 40 μg of monensin or lasalocid per ml. Either antibiotic (10 μg/ml) inhibited Methanobacterium MOH, Methanobacterium formicicum, and Methanosarcina barkeri MS. Methanobacterium ruminantium PS was insensitive to 40 μg of monensin or 20 μg of lasalocid per ml. The methanogenic strain 442 was insensitive to 40 μg of monensin but sensitive to 10 μg of lasalocid per ml. The results suggest that monensin or lasalocid acts in the rumen by selecting for succinate-forming Bacteroides and for S. ruminantium, a propionate producer that decarboxylates succinate to propionate. The selection could lead to an increase in rumen propionate formation. Selection against H2 and formate producers, e.g. R. albus, R. flavefaciens, and B. fibrisolvens, could lead to a depression of methane production in the rumen.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (880K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Chen M, Wolin MJ. Influence of CH4 production by Methanobacterium ruminantium on the fermentation of glucose and lactate by Selenomonas ruminantium. Appl Environ Microbiol. 1977 Dec;34(6):756–759. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Cheng KJ, Costerton JW. Ultrastructure of Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens: a gram-positive bacterium. J Bacteriol. 1977 Mar;129(3):1506–1512. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Costerton JW, Damgaard HN, Cheng KJ. Cell envelope morphology of rumen bacteria. J Bacteriol. 1974 Jun;118(3):1132–1143. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Fitzgerald PR, Mansfield ME. Efficacy of monensin against bovine coccidiosis in young Holstein-Friesian calves. J Protozool. 1973 Feb;20(1):121–126. [PubMed]
  • Hammond AC, Carlson JR, Breeze RG. Monensin and the prevention of tryptophan-induced acute bovine pulmonary edema and emphysema. Science. 1978 Jul 14;201(4351):153–155. [PubMed]
  • Kingsley VV, Hoeniger JF. Growth, structure, and classification of Selenomonas. Bacteriol Rev. 1973 Dec;37(4):479–521. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Latham MJ, Brooker BE, Pettipher GL, Harris PJ. Ruminococcus flavefaciens Cell Coat and Adhesion to Cotton Cellulose and to Cell Walls in Leaves of Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne). Appl Environ Microbiol. 1978 Jan;35(1):156–165. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Latham MJ, Wolin MJ. Fermentation of cellulose by Ruminococcus flavefaciens in the presence and absence of Methanobacterium ruminantium. Appl Environ Microbiol. 1977 Sep;34(3):297–301. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Miller TL, Wolin MJ. A serum bottle modification of the Hungate technique for cultivating obligate anaerobes. Appl Microbiol. 1974 May;27(5):985–987. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Patterson H, Irvin R, Costerton JW, Cheng KJ. Ultrastructure and adhesion properties of Ruminococcus albus. J Bacteriol. 1975 Apr;122(1):278–287. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Scheifinger CC, Linehan B, Wolin MJ. H2 production by Selenomonas ruminantium in the absence and presence of methanogenic bacteria. Appl Microbiol. 1975 Apr;29(4):480–483. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Scheifinger CC, Wolin MJ. Propionate formation from cellulose and soluble sugars by combined cultures of Bacteroides succinogenes and Selenomonas ruminantium. Appl Microbiol. 1973 Nov;26(5):789–795. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Van Maanen RW, Herbein JH, McGilliard AD, Young JW. Effects of monensin on in vivo rumen propionate production and blood glucose kinetics in cattle. J Nutr. 1978 Jun;108(6):1002–1007. [PubMed]
  • Van Nevel CJ, Demeyer DI. Effect of monensin on rumen metabolism in vitro. Appl Environ Microbiol. 1977 Sep;34(3):251–257. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Westley JW, Oliveto EP, Berger J, Evans RH, Jr, Glass R, Stempel A, Toome V, Williams T. Chemical transformations of antibiotic X-537A and their effect on antibacterial activity. J Med Chem. 1973 Apr;16(4):397–403. [PubMed]

Articles from Applied and Environmental Microbiology are provided here courtesy of American Society for Microbiology (ASM)


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...