Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Finely Tuned WspRs Help Bacteria Beat Body By Building Biofilm

Date:
March 25, 2008
Source:
PLoS Biology
Summary:
We present a model for the regulation of a conserved diguanyate cyclase from Pseudomonas that is responsible for cyclic di-GMP production and biofilm formation, providing insight into the molecular mechanism controlling cell signaling and virulence.

Tetrameric assembly of the response regulator diguanylate cyclase WspR from Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The inset shows a close-up of cyclic di-GMP bound to the inhibitory site.
Credit: Holger Sondermann, et. al

Bacteria are particularly harmful to human health when they band together to form a biofilm--a sheet composed of many individual bacteria glued together--because this can allow them to escape from both antibiotics and the immune system of their host. It is thought that most chronic infections are caused by bacterial biofilms, and a new paper explores the signalling system that causes bacteria to team up in this way.

Related Articles


Pseudomonas is the pathogen that forms biofilms in the lungs of people with cystic fibrosis. The new paper, from Holger Sondermann and colleagues, identifies a novel kind of control system for bacterial signalling. Bacteria form a biofilm when the concentration of a molecule called c-di-GMP gets above a certain threshold. Sondermann et al. have determined the structure of the enzyme that makes c-di-GMP. The enzyme is called WspR in Pseudomonas, and the way WspR is controlled in the cell is the focus of their paper.

The authors determined the crystal structure of WspR and followed up with biochemical analysis of the enzyme. This work showed that WspR exists in an active form that produces c-di-GMP and is then bound by c-di-GMP and forced into an inactive form. The study therefore reveals a finely balanced equilibrium between the synthesis and degradation of this key player in biofilm formation.

New approaches to controlling the behavior of bacteria responsible for chronic infections can be envisaged. Because the signalling molecules involved in biofilm formation, such as c-di-GMP, are uniquely found in bacteria, the authors hope that there is potential for new therapeutic treatments based on this work; if you interrupted this bacterial signalling it would have no negative effect on the human host but could be devastating for the bacteria.

Journal reference: De N, Pirruccello M, Krasteva PV, Bae N, Raghavan RV, et al. (2008) Phosphorylation-independent regulation of the diguanylate cyclase WspR. PLoS Biol 6(3): e67.doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0060067


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by PLoS Biology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

PLoS Biology. "Finely Tuned WspRs Help Bacteria Beat Body By Building Biofilm." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 March 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080325083403.htm>.
PLoS Biology. (2008, March 25). Finely Tuned WspRs Help Bacteria Beat Body By Building Biofilm. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 5, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080325083403.htm
PLoS Biology. "Finely Tuned WspRs Help Bacteria Beat Body By Building Biofilm." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080325083403.htm (accessed March 5, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Praying Mantis Looks Long Before It Leaps

Praying Mantis Looks Long Before It Leaps

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Slowed-down footage of the leaps of praying mantises show the insect&apos;s extraordinary precision, say researchers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Octopus Grabs Camera and Turns It Around On Photographer

Octopus Grabs Camera and Turns It Around On Photographer

Buzz60 (Mar. 5, 2015) A photographer got the shot of a lifetime, or rather an octopus did, when it grabbed the camera and turned it around to take an amazing picture of the photographer. Jen Markham (@jenmarkham) has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ringling Bros. Eliminating Elephant Acts

Ringling Bros. Eliminating Elephant Acts

AP (Mar. 5, 2015) The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is ending its iconic elephant acts. The circus&apos; parent company, Feld Entertainment, told the AP exclusively that the acts will be phased out by 2018 over growing public concern about the animals. (March 5) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Tourists Visit Rare Grey Whales in Mexico

Raw: Tourists Visit Rare Grey Whales in Mexico

AP (Mar. 4, 2015) Once nearly extinct, grey whales now migrate in their thousands to Mexico&apos;s Vizcaino reserve in Baja California, in search of warmer waters to mate and give birth. Tourists flock to the reserve to see the whales, measuring up to 49 feet long. (March 4) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins