Evidence for quorum sensing in Clostridium botulinum 56A

L. Zhao, T. J. Montville, D. W. Schaffner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aims: Experiments were designed to detect quorum-sensing signals produced by Clostridium botulinum. Methods and Results: Clostridium botulinum 56A cell-free supernatants obtained at the end of lag phase, the mid-exponential phase and early stationary phase of growth were assayed for bioluminescence in the Vibrio harveyi quorum-sensing assay system. Twelve and 16-h culture supernatants induced bioluminescence in the auto-inducer 2 (AI-2) but not the auto-inducer 1 (AI-1) assay. Intra-species quorum sensing was also assayed as the ability of the supernatants to promote spore germination and outgrowth in a microtitre plate system. Spore populations exposed to C. botulinum supernatant from the end of lag phase became positive for growth sooner than controls. Conclusions: The influence of cell-free supernatant on ungerminated spores and detection of bioluminescence in the AI-2 assay are evidence for a signalling molecule(s) and provide a first step in characterizing C. botulinum quorum sensing. Significance and Impact of the Study: This study suggests that spores do not behave independently of each other and may explain the inocula size effects observed in challenge studies. Whether AI-2 production in C. botulinum serves as an inter-species signal or as a detoxification mechanism remains to be determined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-58
Number of pages5
JournalLetters in Applied Microbiology
Volume42
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006

Fingerprint

Clostridium botulinum
Bioluminescence
Quorum Sensing
Clostridium
bioluminescence
spore
Assays
Spores
assay
Detoxification
size effect
detoxification
Vibrio
germination
Growth
Germination
Molecules
Experiments
experiment
Population

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Keywords

  • Autoinducer-1
  • Autoinducer-2
  • Bioluminescence
  • Spores
  • Vibrio harveyi

Cite this

Zhao, L. ; Montville, T. J. ; Schaffner, D. W. / Evidence for quorum sensing in Clostridium botulinum 56A. In: Letters in Applied Microbiology. 2006 ; Vol. 42, No. 1. pp. 54-58.
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Evidence for quorum sensing in Clostridium botulinum 56A. / Zhao, L.; Montville, T. J.; Schaffner, D. W.

In: Letters in Applied Microbiology, Vol. 42, No. 1, 01.01.2006, p. 54-58.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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