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Can J Microbiol. 1989 Feb;35(2):245-54.

Physiological studies on the growth and utilization of sugars by Listeria species.

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Molecular Biology Laboratory, Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, GA 30333.


Experiments, relevant to growth in milk, were done to delineate the aerobic and anaerobic growth of Listeria species on selected sugars in several media. All species grew on glucose aerobically, forming lactic acid and (or) acetic acid. Anaerobically, only lactic acid was formed; cell yields were 80% of those obtained aerobically. When incubated aerobically, small amounts (1.5 microns/mL) of isovaleric acid, 2-hydroxyisovaleric acid, and trace amounts of isobutyric acid were formed. These products were characteristically formed by 26 strains representing all the species of Listeria. Added leucine stimulated isovaleric acid formation. Anaerobic fermentations of glucose could be followed by 60 to 80% cell lysis; less lysis occurred in air. Anaerobically, only hexoses and pentoses supported growth; aerobically, maltose and lactose supported growth of some strains, but sucrose did not support growth of any strain tested. Listeria grayi and Listeria murrayi utilized the galactose and glucose moieties of lactose for growth; Listeria monocytogenes and Listeria innocua used only the glucose moiety. Glucosamine and N-acetylglucosamine supported aerobic and anaerobic growth as well as glucose, and their presence stimulated the utilization of lactose by "lactose-negative" strains. Analyses of cultures grown at 5 degrees C in sterile milk treated with glucose oxidase supported the conclusion that the glucose of the milk was the major, if not the limiting, substrate that supported growth.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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