Quorum sensing in Pseudomonas aeruginosa controls expression of catalase and superoxide dismutase genes and mediates biofilm susceptibility to hydrogen peroxide

Molecular Microbiology
D J HassettB H Iglewski


Quorum sensing (QS) governs the production of virulence factors and the architecture and sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) resistance of biofilm-grown Pseudomonas aeruginosa. P. aeruginosa QS requires two transcriptional activator proteins known as LasR and RhlR and their cognate autoinducers PAI-1 (N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-L-homoserine lactone) and PAI-2 (N-butyryl-L-homoserine lactone) respectively. This study provides evidence of QS control of genes essential for relieving oxidative stress. Mutants devoid of one or both autoinducers were more sensitive to hydrogen peroxide and phenazine methosulphate, and some PAI mutant strains also demonstrated decreased expression of two superoxide dismutases (SODs), Mn-SOD and Fe-SOD, and the major catalase, KatA. The expression of sodA (encoding Mn-SOD) was particularly dependent on PAI-1, whereas the influence of autoinducers on Fe-SOD and KatA levels was also apparent but not to the degree observed with Mn-SOD. beta-Galactosidase reporter fusion results were in agreement with these findings. Also, the addition of both PAIs to suspensions of the PAI-1/2-deficient double mutant partially restored KatA activity, while the addition of PAI-1 only was sufficient for full restoration of Mn-SOD activi...Continue Reading


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