1887

Abstract

Quorum sensing is a cell density-dependent gene expression mechanism found in many Gram-negative bacteria which involves the production of signal molecules such as -acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs). One significant group of micro-organisms in which quorum sensing has not been previously studied, however, are the moderate halophiles. We describe here the results of our studies of the quorum-sensing system in FP35, which is composed of / homologues: (the putative transcriptional regulator gene) and (the autoinducer synthase gene). To understand how the / system is organized and regulated we conducted RT-PCR and quantitative real-time PCR assays. Transcriptional analysis indicated that the and genes are on the same transcript and that their transcription is growth phase-dependent. HanI seems to be the only autoinducer synthase responsible for the synthesis of AHLs by the bacterium, since the inactivation of resulted in the complete loss of its AHLs. We also found that the gene appears to be transcribed from its own promoter and that its expression does not depend upon HanR. This finding was supported by the fact that the FP35 mutant showed AHL-producing activity and expression similar to that of the wild-type strain, the latter being measured by RT-PCR. Moreover, is expressed from its own promoter and appears to be independent of the AHL signalling molecules produced by HanI.

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2011-12-01
2020-01-19
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