1887

Abstract

Escherichia coli strain 15 (ATCC 9723) formed robust biofilms of two distinct forms on glass tubes. In rich, low-osmolarity medium, the biofilms were restricted to the air/liquid interface, resulting in rings attached to the glass. As it was not evident that these biofilms extended across the liquid surface, we termed them ‘ring’ rather than ‘pellicle’ biofilms. In minimal medium supplemented with a non-fermentable substrate as the carbon/energy source, we observed either robust ring biofilms or little biofilm of any type, depending on the substrate. In contrast, fermentable substrates (sugars and sugar derivatives) supported robust biofilms covering most of the solid/liquid interface, which we termed ‘tube-covering biofilms’. Maximal biofilm growth was observed when the sugar was a relatively poor substrate, supporting slow growth and known to cause minimal dephosphorylation of regulatory protein Enzyme IIA of the phosphotransferase system. Compounds found to be inhibitors of biofilm growth, such as lactate, caused a shift from tube-covering to ring form at low concentration and complete loss of biofilm growth at high when added to minimal medium supplemented with a fermentable substrate. Exogenous cAMP activated biofilm growth under all conditions tested, leading to more intense ring or tube-covering biofilms and/or to a shift from ring to tube-covering form.

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2018-11-22
2020-02-25
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