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Scientists map genome for BLIS K12 probiotic

Last updated on 03-Dec-2012 at 14:44 GMT2012-12-03T14:44:33Z

Scientists map genome for BLIS K12 probiotic

Europe-based scientists have mapped the genome of the probiotic BLIS K12 strain, finding no negative traits and supporting the safety of the strain.

“The high-quality draft genome sequence of this probiotic S. salivarius strain will contribute to our understanding of the role of this species in the oropharyngeal ecology of human health,” wrote scientists from Nestec Ltd., Nestlé Research Center in Switzerland, and Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique in France in the Journal of Bacteriology .


One of the best known probiotics for oral health was developed by scientists at the University of Otago in New Zealand: BLIS K12 is a specific strain of Streptococcus salivarius (S. salivarius), which secretes powerful antimicrobial molecules called BLIS: Bacteriocin-Like-Inhibitory Substances.

BLIS K12 is an oral probiotic that is said to support healthy bacteria in the mouth for long-term fresh breath and immune support.

The ingredient was recently added to Stratum Nutrition’s portfolio of specialty bioactive ingredients. A spokesperson for the company told us that there are about 15 current products in the US marketplace that incorporate BLIS K12.

Dr. Barry Richardson, CEO of BLIS Technologies, welcomed the genome sequencing as “a significant milestone in the commercial development of the BLIS K12 probiotic and once again confirms the excellent safety of the organism.” 

According to Stratum, the sequencing of the BLIS K12 genome is significant because it allows the company and other independent researchers to rapidly identify the presence (or absence) of nucleotide sequences that are associated with undesirable traits such as virulence factors or antibiotic resistance genes. 

The BLIS K12 genome does not contain phenotypically active gene sequences associated with these negative traits, added the company.

Source: Journal of Bacteriology
November 2012, Volume 194, Issue 21, Pages 5959-5960; doi:10.1128/JB.01268-12
“Genome Sequence of the Lantibiotic Bacteriocin Producer Streptococcus salivarius Strain K12”
Authors: C. Barretto, P. Alvarez-Martin, F. Foata, P. Renault, B. Berger

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