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What are bacteriocins? Why are they so interesting?

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Bacteriocins are molecules naturally produced by certain strains of bacteria. They are composed of amino acids, the constituents of proteins. Bacteriocins have the ability to destroy many pathogenic bacteria that can cause health problems.
In fact, certain bacteria secrete bacteriocins in order to prevent other bacteria in their environment from developing at their side: it is therefore a competitive advantage!

Different strains produce different kinds of bacteriocins that are not all effective against the same bacteria. Bacteriocins are of increasing interest to the scientific community as they represent great potential as alternatives to traditional antibiotics and chemical antimicrobials (e.g. for food preservation).


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