Arginine and citrulline do not stimulate growth of two Oenococcus oeni strains in wine.FEMS Microbiol Lett 2009; 290(1):98-104FM
Arginine metabolism by wine lactic acid bacteria (LAB) may lead to wine quality degradation. While arginine is essential for growth of the wine relevant LAB Oenococcus oeni, it remains unclear whether it also stimulates its growth. This study evaluated the effect of arginine and citrulline, the partially metabolized intermediate of the arginine deiminase pathway, on the growth of two commercial O. oeni strains in comparison with a Lactobacillus buchneri strain in wine and at wine pH values. Neither arginine nor citrulline increased growth of both O. oeni strains in comparison with the L. buchneri strain. However, arginine and citrulline were partially degraded in all incubations. The extent of citrulline degradation correlated with lower pH values in oenococcal cultivations but with higher pH values in those of the L. buchneri strain. The degradation kinetics of O. oeni and L. buchneri for malic acid and arginine differed and the latter grew in sterile filtered post-malolactic fermentation wine. This study shows that arginine and citrulline did not stimulate growth of the two O. oeni strains studied, and that their physiological role differed among the wine LAB considered. While arginine may play a role in wine microbiological stability, other nutrients should be investigated for their suitability to create a selective ecological advantage for O. oeni strains in wine.