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To identify and characterize an oligopeptide transport system in Leuconostoc mesenteroides CNRZ 1473.The uptake of a model substrate was monitored by determining intracellular concentrations of the corresponding amino acids by means of reversed-phase HPLC analysis. The oligopeptide transport system is specific for peptides containing at least four amino acid residues and operative under physiological conditions of growth. It is expressed maximally in the presence of oligopeptides, enhanced in the presence of Mg2+ or Ca2+ ions, and driven by ATP or a related energy-rich phosphorylated intermediate.The study showed evidence for and characterized the oligopeptide transport system of Leuc. mesenteroides for the first time.The potential of the findings is discussed with reference to the growth of Leuc. mesenteroides in mixed-strain cultures for the dairy industry.