1887

Abstract

This study used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to probe the local cell-surface interactions associated with the glucan polymers of , the macromolecules most commonly attributed to the virulence of this microbe. force spectroscopy was used to quantitatively probe and correlate cell-surface adhesion and dynamics with UA140 wild-type and five glucosyltransferase mutants. Adhesion between the tooth surface and is largely mediated by glucan production from sucrose via three glucosyltransferases (Gtfs; GtfB, GtfC and GtfD). To monitor the contribution of these particular Gtfs, isogenic mutants of were constructed by specific gene inactivation and compared to the wild-type under sucrose and non-sucrose conditions. We report direct measurement of the mechanical properties associated with glucan macromolecules demonstrating that the local adhesion strength increases in a time-dependent process, with a decrease in the average number of rupture events. This finding suggests that attaches mainly through glucans to surfaces in the presence of sucrose. In addition, a possible role of the Gtf proteins in sucrose-independent attachment is supported by the decreased adhesion properties of the GtfBCD mutant compared to the wild-type.

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2007-09-01
2020-03-28
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