Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Microorganisms. 2019 May 10;7(5). pii: E126. doi: 10.3390/microorganisms7050126.

Members of the Lactobacillus Genus Complex (LGC) as Opportunistic Pathogens: A Review.

Author information

1
Diagnostica Specialistica, Sezione di Isernia, Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale dell'Abruzzo e del Molise "G. Caporale", C.da Breccelle Snc, 86170 Isernia, Italy. f.rossi@izs.it.
2
Medicine and Health Science Department "V. Tiberio", University of Molise, Via de Santis, 86100 Campobasso, Italy. carmela.amadoro@unimol.it.
3
Medicine and Health Science Department "V. Tiberio", University of Molise, Via de Santis, 86100 Campobasso, Italy. colavita@unimol.it.

Abstract

Microorganisms belonging to the Lactobacillus genus complex (LGC) are naturally associated or deliberately added to fermented food products and are widely used as probiotic food supplements. Moreover, these bacteria normally colonize the mouth, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, and female genitourinary tract of humans. They exert multiple beneficial effects and are regarded as safe microorganisms. However, infections caused by lactobacilli, mainly endocarditis, bacteremia, and pleuropneumonia, occasionally occur. The relevance of Lactobacillus spp. and other members of the LGC as opportunistic pathogens in humans and related risk factors and predisposing conditions are illustrated in this review article with more emphasis on the species L. rhamnosus that has been more often involved in infection cases. The methods used to identify this species in clinical samples, to distinguish strains and to evaluate traits that can be associated to pathogenicity, as well as future perspectives for improving the identification of potentially pathogenic strains, are outlined.

KEYWORDS:

Lactobacillus species; infections; opportunistic pathogens; predisposing factors; risk factors; virulence

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI) Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center