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Validation of an ampicillin selection protocol to enrich for mutants of Listeria monocytogenes unable to replicate on fresh produce.

08:00 EDT 12th April 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Validation of an ampicillin selection protocol to enrich for mutants of Listeria monocytogenes unable to replicate on fresh produce."

Several outbreaks of listeriosis have implicated fresh produce but genetic factors required for growth of Listeria monocytogenes on produce remain poorly characterized. Based on the fact that β-lactam antibiotics only kill bacterial cells that are growing, we hypothesized that ampicillin selection can enrich for L. monocytogenes mutants unable to grow on produce. For validation, we examined relative recovery of L. monocytogenes strain 2011L-2858 and its cold-sensitive mutant L1E4 following inoculation of cantaloupe rind fragments with 1:1 mixture of the strains and incubation at 4 °C with or without ampicillin. L. monocytogenes from rind fragments inoculated with the mixed cultures and incubated in the presence of ampicillin were used to inoculate fresh rind fragments for a second round of enrichment. In the presence of ampicillin, the proportion of L1E4 increased from 55% on day 0 to 78% on day 14, with higher recovery (85% after 14 days) in the second round of enrichment. These data suggested that L1E4 was enriched on cantaloupe rind fragments while growing cells of the wildtype were killed by ampicillin. Application of this protocol to transposon mutant libraries from three L. monocytogenes strains yielded several mutants unable to grow on cantaloupe. Thus, ampicillin selection can facilitate discovery of genes essential for growth of L. monocytogenes on fresh produce.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: FEMS microbiology letters
ISSN: 1574-6968
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