1887

Abstract

Various phenotypes ranging from biofilm formation to pigment production have been shown to be regulated by quorum sensing (QS) in many bacteria. However, studies of the regulation of pigments produced by marine bacteria in saline conditions and of biofilm-associated phenotypes are scarcer. This study focuses on the demonstration of the existence of a QS communication system involving -acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs) in the Mediterranean Sea strain TC14. We have investigated whether TC14 produces the violacein pigment, and whether intrinsic or exogenous AHLs could influence its production and modulate biofilm-associated phenotypes. Here, we demonstrate that the purple pigment produced by TC14 is violacein. The study shows that in planktonic conditions, TC14 produces more pigment in the medium in which it grows less. Using different approaches, the results also show that TC14 does not produce intrinsic AHLs in our conditions. When exogenous AHLs are added in planktonic conditions, the production of violacein is upregulated by C-, C-, 3-oxo-C and 3-oxo-C-HSLs (homoserine lactones), and downregulated by 3-oxo-C-HSL. In sessile conditions, 3-oxo-C-HSL upregulates the production of violacein. The study of the biofilm-associated phenotypes shows that oxo-derived-HSLs decrease adhesion, swimming and biofilm formation. While 3-oxo-C and 3-oxo-C-HSLs decrease both swimming and adhesion, 3-oxo-C-HSLs decrease not only violacein production in planktonic conditions but also swimming, adhesion and more subtly biofilm formation. Therefore, TC14 may possess a functional LuxR-type QS receptor capable of sensing extrinsic AHLs, which controls violacein production, motility, adhesion and biofilm formation.

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2015-10-01
2019-08-23
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