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Transcription in Escherichia coli PHL628 biofilms

Junker, Lauren M., Toba, F. Andreas, Hay, Anthony G.
FEMS microbiology letters 2007 v.268 no.2 pp. 237-243
Escherichia coli, biofilm, carbon, gene expression, gene induction, genes, mutants, nutrients, transcription (genetics)
The biofilm-specific gene expression of Escherichia coli PHL628 was compared with that from exponentially growing planktonic cells using macroarray technology. In duplicate experiments, both biofilm and planktonic cells were grown in separate continually stirred tank reactors at 57% of the maximal planktonic growth rate. When transcriptional results from planktonic cultures were compared with that of biofilm grown cells, c. 4.5% of the genome showed a significant change in expression. The results presented here point to an extremely heterogeneous biofilm wherein specific gene induction was consistent with the response of biofilm cells to gradients in electron acceptors, nutrients, carbon source and a variety of stresses. A mutant in one of the genes, gspM (pshM), that was induced in biofilms was constructed and was shown to be compromised for its ability to form mature biofilms. This analysis provides additional insight into the genes induced during biofilm development, the gradients they respond to, the contribution of one gene to biofilm development, and a comparison of this with other transcriptional profiles from E. coli biofilms.