Investigation of biomarkers of bile tolerance in Lactobacillus casei using comparative proteomics

J Proteome Res. 2012 Jan 1;11(1):109-18. doi: 10.1021/pr200828t. Epub 2011 Nov 17.


The identification of cell determinants involved in probiotic features is a challenge in current probiotic research. In this work, markers of bile tolerance in Lactobacillus casei were investigated using comparative proteomics. Six L. casei strains were classified on the basis of their ability to grow in the presence of bile salts in vitro. Constitutive differences between whole cell proteomes of the most tolerant strain (L. casei Rosell-215), the most sensitive one (L. casei ATCC 334), and a moderately tolerant strain (L. casei DN-114 001) were investigated. The ascertained subproteome was further studied for the six strains in both standard and bile stressing conditions. Focus was on proteins whose expression levels were correlated with observed levels of bile tolerance in vitro, particularly those previously reported to be involved in the bile tolerance process of lactobacilli. Analysis revealed that 12 proteins involved in membrane modification (NagA, NagB, and RmlC), cell protection and detoxification (ClpL and OpuA), as well as central metabolism (Eno, GndA, Pgm, Pta, Pyk, Rp1l, and ThRS) were likely to be key determinants of bile tolerance in L. casei and may serve as potential biomarkers for phenotyping or screening purposes. The approach used enabled the correlation of expression levels of particular proteins with a specific probiotic trait.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism*
  • Bile Acids and Salts / pharmacology*
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Cattle
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Gene Expression
  • Lacticaseibacillus casei / drug effects
  • Lacticaseibacillus casei / growth & development
  • Lacticaseibacillus casei / physiology*
  • Probiotics
  • Proteome / genetics
  • Proteome / metabolism*
  • Proteomics
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Stress, Physiological*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Bile Acids and Salts
  • Biomarkers
  • Proteome