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Dynamics of AHL mediated quorum sensing under flow and non-flow conditions

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Publication date 2012
Author Meyer A, Megerle JA, Kuttler C, Muller J, Aguilar C, Eberl L, Hense BA, Radler JO,
Project Analysis of the quorum sensing circuitry of Burkholderia cenocepacia H111
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Volume (Issue) 9(2)
Page(s) 1 - 10
Title of proceedings PHYSICAL BIOLOGY
DOI 10.1088/1478-3975/9/2/026007


Quorum sensing (QS) describes the capability of microbes to communicate with each other by the aid of small molecules. Here we investigate the dynamics of QS-regulated gene expression induced by acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs) in Pseudomonas putida IsoF containing a green fluorescent protein-based AHL reporter. The fluorescence time course of individual colonies is monitored following the external addition of a defined AHL concentration to cells which had previously reached the QS-inactive state in AHL-free medium. Using a microfluidic setup the experiment is performed both under flow and non-flow conditions. We find that without supplying external AHL gene expression is induced without flow while flow suppresses the induction. Both without and with flow, at a low AHL concentration the fluorescence onset is significantly delayed while fluorescence starts to increase directly upon the addition of AHL at a high concentration. The differences between no flow and flow can be accounted for using a two-compartment model. This indicates AHL accumulation in a volume which is not affected by the flow. The experiments furthermore show significant cell-to-cell and colony-to-colony variability which is discussed in the context of a compartmentalized QS mechanism.