Heterologous protein production and delivery systems for Lactococcus lactis

Genet Mol Res. 2003 Mar 31;2(1):102-11.


Lactic acid bacteria (LAB), widely used in the food industry, are present in the intestine of most animals, including humans. The potential use of these bacteria as live vehicles for the production and delivery of heterologous proteins of vaccinal, medical or technological interest has therefore been extensively investigated. Lactococcus lactis, a LAB species, is a potential candidate for the production of biologically useful proteins. Several delivery systems have been developed to target heterologous proteins to a specific cell location (i.e., cytoplasm, cell wall or extracellular medium). A promising application of L. lactis is its use as an antigen delivery vehicle, for the development of live mucosal vaccines. The expression of heterologous proteins and antigens as well as the various delivery systems developed in L. lactis, and its use as an oral vaccine carrier are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens / genetics
  • Antigens / metabolism
  • Cytokines / genetics
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Genetic Vectors*
  • Immunity, Mucosal
  • Lactococcus lactis / genetics*
  • Lactococcus lactis / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Vaccines*


  • Antigens
  • Cytokines
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Vaccines