Scientific article

Swarming of Pseudomonas aeruginosa is dependent on cell-to-cell signaling and requires flagella and pili

Published inJournal of bacteriology, vol. 182, no. 21, p. 5990-5996
Publication date2000

We describe swarming in Pseudomonas aeruginosa as a third mode of surface translocation in addition to the previously described swimming and twitching motilities. Swarming in P. aeruginosa is induced on semisolid surfaces (0.5 to 0.7% agar) under conditions of nitrogen limitation and in response to certain amino acids. Glutamate, aspartate, histidine, or proline, when provided as the sole source of nitrogen, induced swarming, while arginine, asparagine, and glutamine, among other amino acids, did not sustain swarming. Cells from the edge of the swarm were about twice as long as cells from the swarm center. In both instances, bacteria possessing two polar flagella were observed by light and electron microscopy. While a fliC mutant of P. aeruginosa displayed slightly diminished swarming, a pilR and a pilA mutant, both deficient in type IV pili, were unable to swarm. Furthermore, cells with mutations in the las cell-to-cell signaling system showed diminished swarming behavior, while rhl mutants were completely unable to swarm. Evidence is presented for rhamnolipids being the actual surfactant involved in swarming motility, which explains the involvement of the cell-to-cell signaling circuitry of P. aeruginosa in this type of surface motility.

  • Aspartic Acid
  • Bacterial Proteins/genetics
  • Culture Media
  • DNA-Binding Proteins/genetics
  • Decanoates/metabolism
  • Disaccharides/metabolism
  • Fimbriae Proteins
  • Fimbriae, Bacterial/ physiology
  • Flagella/ physiology/ultrastructure
  • Flagellin/genetics
  • Glutamic Acid
  • Histidine
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Movement
  • Mutation
  • Nitrogen
  • Proline
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa/growth & development/ physiology
  • Rhamnose/analogs & derivatives/metabolism
  • Signal Transduction
  • Surface-Active Agents/metabolism
  • Trans-Activators/genetics
  • Transcription Factors/genetics
Citation (ISO format)
KOHLER, Thilo et al. Swarming of Pseudomonas aeruginosa is dependent on cell-to-cell signaling and requires flagella and pili. In: Journal of bacteriology, 2000, vol. 182, n° 21, p. 5990–5996. doi: 10.1128/jb.182.21.5990-5996.2000
Updates (1)
ISSN of the journal0021-9193

Technical informations

Creation06/21/2010 10:25:08 AM
First validation06/21/2010 10:25:08 AM
Update time03/14/2023 3:44:27 PM
Status update03/14/2023 3:44:27 PM
Last indexation10/18/2023 9:25:21 AM
All rights reserved by Archive ouverte UNIGE and the University of GenevaunigeBlack