Biotechnology Letters, Vol.43, No.3, 645-654, 2021
Knock out of sHSP genes determines some modifications in the probiotic attitude of Lactiplantibacillus plantarum
Objective We investigated whether the knock out of small heat shock protein (sHSP) genes (hsp1, hsp2 and hsp3) impact on probiotic features of Lactiplantibacillus plantarum WCFS1, aiming to find specific microbial effectors involved in microbe-host interplay. Results The probiotic properties of L. plantarum WCFS1 wild type, hsp1, hsp2 and hsp3 mutant clones were evaluated and compared through in vitro trials. Oro-gastro-intestinal assays pointed to significantly lower survival for hsp1 and hsp2 mutants under stomach-like conditions, and for hsp3 mutant under intestinal stress. Adhesion to human enterocyte-like cells was similar for all clones, though the hsp2 mutant exhibited higher adhesiveness. L. plantarum cells attenuated the transcriptional induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines on lipopolysaccharide-treated human macrophages, with some exception for the hsp1 mutant. Intriguingly, this clone also induced a higher IL10/IL12 ratio, which is assumed to indicate the anti-inflammatory potential of probiotics. Conclusions sHSP genes deletion determined some differences in gut stress resistance, cellular adhesion and immuno-modulation, also implying effects on in vivo interaction with the host. HSP1 might contribute to immunomodulatory mechanisms, though additional experiments are necessary to test this feature.