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Anaerobe. 2010 Dec;16(6):597-603. doi: 10.1016/j.anaerobe.2010.06.009. Epub 2010 Jul 21.

Production of an antibacterial substance in the digestive tract involved in colonization-resistance against Clostridium perfringens.

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Institut des Sciences Moléculaires de Marseille, iSm2/BiosCiences UMR-CNRS, Aix-Marseille Université, Centre Scientifique de Saint-Jérôme, France.


Ruminococcus gnavus E1, Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron LEMF4, Clostridium hathewayi LEMC7, and Clostridium orbiscindens LEMH9 were isolated from ex germ-free mice inoculated with a human faecal microbiota. When initially germ-free mice who were previously inoculated with the strain E1 alone, or a four-strain consortium [E1, LEMF4, LEMC7, and LEMH9], were then challenged with 10⁸ counts of Clostridium perfringens; the target strain was rapidly eliminated from the digestive tract of the animals (<10² cfu g⁻¹ of faeces). R. gnavus E1 was able to produce a diffusible anti-C. perfringens substance that accumulated in the faeces of monoassociated animals, but failed to be detected in the faeces of mice associated with the four-strain consortium. The capability to produce the antibacterial substance was transferred in the digestive tract of gnotobiotic mice to a Dorea longicatena strain. Further experiments realized with the D. longicatena wild type strain and the transconjugant support the assumption that the diffusible antibacterial substance was necessary for obtaining the antagonistic effect against C. perfringens, but that it acted as a precursor in the mechanism of interaction of the four-strain consortia.

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