The hydrolytic F-1-part of the F1F0-ATPase was over-expressed in Lactobacillus (L.) plantarum NC8 and L. sakei Lb790x during fermentation of glucose or ribose, in order to study how changes in the intracellular levels of ATP and ADP affect the metabolic fluxes. The uncoupled ATPase activity resulted in a decrease in intracellular energy level (ATP/ADP ratio), biomass yield and growth rate. Interestingly, the glycolytic and ribolytic flux increased in L. plantarum with uncoupled ATPase activity compared to the reference strain by up to 20% and 50%, respectively. The ATP demand was estimated to have approximately 80% control on both the glycolytic and ribolytic flux in L. plantarum under these conditions. In contrast, the glycolytic and ribolytic flux decreased in L. sakei with uncoupled ATPase activity. (C) 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.