Responses of Lactic Acid Bacteria to Heat Stress

  • Pekka Varmanen
  • Kirsi Savijoki
Part of the Food Microbiology and Food Safety book series (FMFS)


Lactic acid bacteria (LAB), like other living cells, need to adjust their physiology to cope with heat stress. Commonly, bacteria respond to a sudden increase in temperature by rapid changes in gene expression that increase the levels of a set of proteins called heat-shock proteins (HSPs). The two most common classes of HSPs are molecular chaperones (which refold denatured proteins) and energy-dependent proteases (which proteolytically dispose of denatured proteins). Although HSPs are universally conserved, the mechanisms behind their regulated expression exhibit considerable variation. Much of our current understanding of bacterial heat-stress-response gene-regulation mechanisms is derived from the Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis model systems. Here we discuss specific aspects of the heat-shock response and its regulation in LAB and Bifidobacteria, with a focus on mechanistic studies.


Lactic Acid Bacterium Bifidobacterium Longum Lactobacillus Bulgaricus Follow Heat Shock Nonnative Protein 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Food and Environmental SciencesUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland

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