Cell-to-cell bacterial communication via diffusible signals is addressed and the conceptual framework in which quorum sensing is usually described is evaluated. By applying equations ruling the physical diffusion of the autoinducer molecules, one can calculate the gradient profiles that would occur either around a single cell or at the center of volumes of increasing size and increasing cell densities. Water-based matrices at 25 degrees C and viscous biofilms at colder temperatures are compared. Some basic consequences relevant for the field of microbial signalling arise. As regards induction, gradient-mixing dynamics between as little as two cells lying at a short distance appears to be sufficient for the buildup of a concentration reaching the known thresholds for quorum sensing. A straight line in which the highest concentrations occur is also created as a consequence of the gradient overlap geometry, providing an additional signal information potentially useful for chemotactic responses. In terms of whole population signalling, it is shown how the concentration perceived by a cell in the center is critically dependent not only on the cell density but also on the size of the biofilm itself. Tables and formulas for the practical prediction of N-acyl homoserine lactones concentrations at desired distances in different cell density biofilms are provided.

Consequences of relative cellular positioning on quorum sensing and bacterial cell-to-cell communication

ALBERGHINI, SARA;POLONE, ELISA;CORICH, VIVIANA;CARLOT, MILENA;SENO, FLAVIO;TROVATO, ANTONIO;SQUARTINI, ANDREA
2009

Abstract

Cell-to-cell bacterial communication via diffusible signals is addressed and the conceptual framework in which quorum sensing is usually described is evaluated. By applying equations ruling the physical diffusion of the autoinducer molecules, one can calculate the gradient profiles that would occur either around a single cell or at the center of volumes of increasing size and increasing cell densities. Water-based matrices at 25 degrees C and viscous biofilms at colder temperatures are compared. Some basic consequences relevant for the field of microbial signalling arise. As regards induction, gradient-mixing dynamics between as little as two cells lying at a short distance appears to be sufficient for the buildup of a concentration reaching the known thresholds for quorum sensing. A straight line in which the highest concentrations occur is also created as a consequence of the gradient overlap geometry, providing an additional signal information potentially useful for chemotactic responses. In terms of whole population signalling, it is shown how the concentration perceived by a cell in the center is critically dependent not only on the cell density but also on the size of the biofilm itself. Tables and formulas for the practical prediction of N-acyl homoserine lactones concentrations at desired distances in different cell density biofilms are provided.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/2434411
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