Interference with AI-2-mediated bacterial cell-cell communication

Karina B. Xavier, Bonnie L. Bassler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

211 Scopus citations

Abstract

Bacteria communicate by means of chemical signal molecules called autoinducers. This process, called quorum sensing, allows bacteria to count the members in the community and to alter gene expression synchronously across the population. Quorum-sensing-controlled processes are often crucial for successful bacterial-host relationships - both symbiotic and pathogenic. Most quorum-sensing autoinducers promote intraspecies communication, but one autoinducer, called AI-2, is produced and detected by a wide variety of bacteria and is proposed to allow interspecies communication. Here we show that some species of bacteria can manipulate AI-2 signalling and interfere with other species' ability to assess and respond correctly to changes in cell population density. AI-2 signalling, and the interference with it, could have important ramifications for eukaryotes in the maintenance of normal microflora and in protection from pathogenic bacteria.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)750-753
Number of pages4
JournalNature
Volume437
Issue number7059
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 29 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

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