Fourteen sphere-shaped and 30 rod-shaped lactic acid bacteria were isolated from soy sauce mash of two factories in Thailand. These strains were separated into two groups, Group A and Group B, by cell shape and DNA-DNA similarity. Group A contained 14 tetrad-forming strains, and these strains were identified as Tetragenococcus halophilus by DNA similarity. Group B contained 30 rod-shaped bacteria, and they were further divided into four Subgroups, B1, B2, B3, and B4, and three ungrouped strains by phenotypic characteristics and DNA similarity. Subgroup B1 contained 16 strains, and these strains were identified as Lactobacillus acidipiscis by DNA similarity. Subgroup B2 included two strains, and the strains were identified as Lactobacillus farciminis by DNA similarity. Subgroup B3 contained five strains. The strains had meso-diaminopimelic acid in the cell wall, and were identified as Lactobacillus pentosus by DNA similarity. The strains tested produced DL-lactic acid from D-glucose. Subgroup B4 contained four strains. The strains had meso-diaminopimelic acid in the cell wall, and they were identified as Lactobacillus plantarum by DNA similarity. Two ungrouped strains were homofermentative, and one was heterofermentative. They showed a low degree of DNA similarity with the type strains tested, and were left unnamed. The distribution of lactic acid bacteria in soy sauce mash in Thailand is discussed.
2002 by The Applied Microbiology, Molecular and Cellular Biosciences Research Foundation