HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Say what? Bacterial conversation stoppers

While a chattering crowd of various species of bacteria is essentially a microbial tower of Babel, certain snippets of their chemical conversation are almost universally understood. HHMI researchers have found that bacteria of different species can talk to each other using a common language and also that some species can manipulate the conversation to confuse other bacteria.

The interspecies crosstalk and misdirection could have important consequences for human health, said Bonnie L. Bassler, an HHMI investigator at Princeton University whose study was published in the September 29, 2005, issue of Nature. "The ability of cells to communicate with one another and the ability to interfere with the communication process could have consequences in niches containing competing species of bacteria or in niches where bacteria associate with humans," Bassler said. "In the gut, you can imagine how the normal microflora might interfere with cell-cell communication to thwart bacterial invaders."

Using a chemical communication process called quorum sensing, bacteria converse among themselves to count their numbers and to get the population to act in unison. A synchronized group of bacteria can mimic the power of a multi-cellular organism, ready to face challenges too daunting for an individual microbe going it alone. Swelling populations trigger their quorum-sensing apparatuses, which have different effects in different types of bacteria. One species might respond by releasing a toxin, while another might cut loose from a biofilm and move on to another environment.

Each species of bacteria has a private language, but most also share a molecular vernacular that Bassler's lab discovered about 10 years ago. A chemical signal called autoinducer-2 (AI-2), originating from the same gene in all bacteria, is released outside the cell to announce the cell's presence. Nearby bacteria take a local census by monitoring AI-2 levels and conduct themselves as
'"/>

Contact: Jennifer Michalowski
michalow@hhmi.org
301-215-8576
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
29-Sep-2005


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Better together: Bacterial endosymbionts are essential for the reproduction of a fungus
2. Bacterial response to oxidation studied as toxin barometer
3. Bacterial walls come tumbling down
4. Bacterial switch gene regulates how oceans emit sulfur into atmosphere
5. Bacterial protein shows promise in treating intestinal parasites
6. The results are in: Bacterial parasite strives for balance in host infection
7. Bacterial protein mimics host to cripple defenses
8. Bacterial cooperation as a target for anti-infectious therapy
9. New insight into autoimmune disease: Bacterial infections promote recognition of self-glycolipids
10. Bacterial spread all down to chance: Some strains just the lucky ones
11. OHSU study: Bacterial switching mechanism key to survival

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/2/2016)... , March 2, 2016 ... the addition of the  "Global Biometrics Market ... offering.  ,     (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130307/600769) , , Global ... grow at a CAGR of around 27% ... ) has announced the addition of the  ...
(Date:3/1/2016)... 2016 http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/ghsgdt/global_biometric ... the  "Global Biometric Access Control Systems ... offering. --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/ghsgdt/global_biometric ) ... "Global Biometric Access Control Systems Market ... --> Research and Markets ( ...
(Date:3/1/2016)... FRANCISCO , March 1, 2016  A new ... extends biometric authentication to the blockchain space to secure ... Bitcoin transactions that have ever been executed. ... assets with over 10,000 transactions on any given day ... enterprises to keep encrypted biometric data decentralized, offline and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... PathSensors, Inc., a leading ... Dr. Lamka will assist PathSensors in expanding the use of the company’s CANARY® ... CANARY® test platform for the detection of harmful pathogens, including a number of ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... Global Stem Cells Group ... Ross is the founder of GSCG affiliate Kimera Labs in Miami. , In 2004, ... hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for hematologic disorders and the suppression of graft vs. host ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... April 27, 2016 MedDay, a biotechnology ... announces the appointment of Catherine Moukheibir as Chairman of its ... Chairman, Jean Jacques Garaud , who contributed to the ... effective immediately. Catherine started her career in strategy ... and London .  She held C-Suite level ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... ... 27, 2016 , ... Cameron Cushman has joined ... in the firm’s Intellectual Property practice group. , Clients turn to Cushman for ... has an electrical engineering and computer engineering background, and experience in the medical ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: