Comparison of plasmids from clinical Lactobacillus strains
Harris, Lyle Keenan
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The vaginal mucosa is dominated by Gram positive, rod shaped lactobacilli which serve as a natural barrier against infection. In both healthy and BV infected women Lactobacillus crispatus and Lactobacillus jensennii has been found to be the predominant Lactobacillus species. Many studies have been conducted to assess factors influencing lactobacilli dominance in the vaginal microbiome. However, no study has evaluated the impact of plasmids on the vaginal lactobacilli. In the present study two plasmids, pLc17 and pLc4, isolated from vaginal Lactobacillus species of both healthy and BV infected women were characterized. pLc4 was present in both Lactobacillus crispatus and Lactobacillus jensennii while pLc17 was only present in Lactobacillus crispatus. pLc17 (16663 bp in size) encoded a ribonucleotide diphosphate reductase (RNR), a filamentation induced by cAMP-like (FIC-like) protein and numerous mobile elements.