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      From red to green: the propidium iodide-permeable membrane of Shewanella decolorationis S12 is repairable

      1 , 2 , 2 , a , 1 , 2

      Scientific Reports

      Nature Publishing Group

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          Abstract

          Viability is a common issue of concern in almost all microbial processes. Fluorescence-based assays are extensively used in microbial viability assessment, especially for mixed-species samples or biofilms. Propidium iodide (PI) is the most frequently used fluorescence indicator for cell viability based on the membrane permeability. Our results showed that the accumulation of succinate from fumarate respiration could induce PI-permeability in Shewanella decolorationis biofilm cells. Confocal laser scanning microscope further showed that the PI-permeable membrane could be repaired in situ when the extracellular succinate was eliminated by switching fumarate respiration to electrode respiration. Simultaneously with the membrane repair, the electrode respiring capacity of the originally PI-permeable cells was recovered. Agar-colony counts suggested that a major portion of the repaired cells were viable but nonculturable (VBNC). The results evidenced that S. decolorationis S12 has the capacity to repair PI-permeable membranes which suggests a reevaluation of the fate and function of the PI-permeable bacteria and expanded our knowledge on the flexibility of bacterial survival status in harsh environments.

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          Bacterial biofilms: from the natural environment to infectious diseases.

          Biofilms--matrix-enclosed microbial accretions that adhere to biological or non-biological surfaces--represent a significant and incompletely understood mode of growth for bacteria. Biofilm formation appears early in the fossil record (approximately 3.25 billion years ago) and is common throughout a diverse range of organisms in both the Archaea and Bacteria lineages, including the 'living fossils' in the most deeply dividing branches of the phylogenetic tree. It is evident that biofilm formation is an ancient and integral component of the prokaryotic life cycle, and is a key factor for survival in diverse environments. Recent advances show that biofilms are structurally complex, dynamic systems with attributes of both primordial multicellular organisms and multifaceted ecosystems. Biofilm formation represents a protected mode of growth that allows cells to survive in hostile environments and also disperse to colonize new niches. The implications of these survival and propagative mechanisms in the context of both the natural environment and infectious diseases are discussed in this review.
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            Recent findings on the viable but nonculturable state in pathogenic bacteria.

            Many bacteria, including a variety of important human pathogens, are known to respond to various environmental stresses by entry into a novel physiological state, where the cells remain viable, but are no longer culturable on standard laboratory media. On resuscitation from this 'viable but nonculturable' (VBNC) state, the cells regain culturability and the renewed ability to cause infection. It is likely that the VBNC state is a survival strategy, although several interesting alternative explanations have been suggested. This review describes the VBNC state, the various chemical and physical factors known to induce cells into this state, the cellular traits and gene expression exhibited by VBNC cells, their antibiotic resistance, retention of virulence and ability to attach and persist in the environment, and factors that have been found to allow resuscitation of VBNC cells. Along with simple reversal of the inducing stresses, a variety of interesting chemical and biological factors have been shown to allow resuscitation, including extracellular resuscitation-promoting proteins, a novel quorum-sensing system (AI-3) and interactions with amoeba. Finally, the central role of catalase in the VBNC response of some bacteria, including its genetic regulation, is described.
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              Anode Biofilm Transcriptomics Reveals Outer Surface Components Essential for High Density Current Production in Geobacter sulfurreducens Fuel Cells

              The mechanisms by which Geobacter sulfurreducens transfers electrons through relatively thick (>50 µm) biofilms to electrodes acting as a sole electron acceptor were investigated. Biofilms of Geobacter sulfurreducens were grown either in flow-through systems with graphite anodes as the electron acceptor or on the same graphite surface, but with fumarate as the sole electron acceptor. Fumarate-grown biofilms were not immediately capable of significant current production, suggesting substantial physiological differences from current-producing biofilms. Microarray analysis revealed 13 genes in current-harvesting biofilms that had significantly higher transcript levels. The greatest increases were for pilA, the gene immediately downstream of pilA, and the genes for two outer c-type membrane cytochromes, OmcB and OmcZ. Down-regulated genes included the genes for the outer-membrane c-type cytochromes, OmcS and OmcT. Results of quantitative RT-PCR of gene transcript levels during biofilm growth were consistent with microarray results. OmcZ and the outer-surface c-type cytochrome, OmcE, were more abundant and OmcS was less abundant in current-harvesting cells. Strains in which pilA, the gene immediately downstream from pilA, omcB, omcS, omcE, or omcZ was deleted demonstrated that only deletion of pilA or omcZ severely inhibited current production and biofilm formation in current-harvesting mode. In contrast, these gene deletions had no impact on biofilm formation on graphite surfaces when fumarate served as the electron acceptor. These results suggest that biofilms grown harvesting current are specifically poised for electron transfer to electrodes and that, in addition to pili, OmcZ is a key component in electron transfer through differentiated G. sulfurreducens biofilms to electrodes.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Sci Rep
                Sci Rep
                Scientific Reports
                Nature Publishing Group
                2045-2322
                21 December 2015
                2015
                : 5
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Microbial Culture Collection and Application, Guangdong Institute of Microbiology , Guangzhou, China
                [2 ]State Key Laboratory of Applied Microbiology Southern China , Guangzhou, China
                Author notes
                Article
                srep18583
                10.1038/srep18583
                4685271
                26687136
                Copyright © 2015, Macmillan Publishers Limited

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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