Title: Obg and membrane depolarization are part of a microbial bet-hedging strategy that leads to antibiotic tolerance
Authors: Verstraeten, Natalie *
Knapen, Wouter *
Kint, Cyrielle
Liebens, Veerle
Van den Bergh, Bram
Dewachter, Liselot
Michiels, Joran
Fu, Qiang
David, Charlotte
Fierro GutiƩrrez, Ana Carolina Elisa
Marchal, Kathleen
Beirlant, Jan
Versées, Wim
Hofkens, Johan
Jansen, Maarten
Fauvart, Maarten #
Michiels, Jan # ×
Issue Date: 2-Jul-2015
Publisher: Cell Press
Series Title: Molecular Cell vol:59 issue:1 pages:9-21
Abstract: Within bacterial populations, a small fraction of persister cells is transiently capable of surviving exposure to lethal doses of antibiotics. As a bet-hedging strategy, persistence levels are determined both by stochastic induction and by environmental stimuli, called responsive diversification. Little is known on the mechanisms that link the low frequency of persisters to environmental signals. Our results support a central role for the conserved GTPase Obg in determining persistence in Escherichia coli in response to nutrient starvation. Obg-mediated persistence requires the stringent response alarmone (p)ppGpp and proceeds through transcriptional control of the hokB-sokB type I toxin-antitoxin module. In individual cells, increased Obg levels induce HokB expression, which in turn results in a collapse of the membrane potential, leading to dormancy. Obg also controls persistence in Pseudomonas aeruginosa and thus constitutes a conserved regulator of antibiotic tolerance. Combined, our findings signify an important step towards unravelling shared genetic mechanisms underlying persistence.
ISSN: 1097-2765
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Centre of Microbial and Plant Genetics
Molecular Imaging and Photonics
Statistics Section
* (joint) first author
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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