Quorum sensing modulates the formation of virulent Legionella persisters within infected cells

Personnic, Nicolas and Striednig, Bianca and Lezan, Emmanuelle and Manske, Christian and Welin, Amanda and Schmidt, Alexander and Hilbi, Hubert. (2019) Quorum sensing modulates the formation of virulent Legionella persisters within infected cells. Nature communications, 10 (1). p. 5216.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/75072/

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The facultative intracellular bacterium Legionella pneumophila replicates in environmental amoebae and in lung macrophages, and causes Legionnaires' disease. Here we show that L. pneumophila reversibly forms replicating and nonreplicating subpopulations of similar size within amoebae. The nonreplicating bacteria are viable and metabolically active, display increased antibiotic tolerance and a distinct proteome, and show high virulence as well as the capacity to form a degradation-resistant compartment. Upon infection of naïve or interferon-γ-activated macrophages, the nonreplicating subpopulation comprises ca. 10% or 50%, respectively, of the total intracellular bacteria; hence, the nonreplicating subpopulation is of similar size in amoebae and activated macrophages. The numbers of nonreplicating bacteria within amoebae are reduced in the absence of the autoinducer synthase LqsA or other components of the Lqs quorum-sensing system. Our results indicate that virulent, antibiotic-tolerant subpopulations of L. pneumophila are formed during infection of evolutionarily distant phagocytes, in a process controlled by the Lqs system.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Biozentrum > Services Biozentrum > Proteomics (Schmidt)
UniBasel Contributors:Schmidt, Alexander
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:05 Apr 2020 17:08
Deposited On:05 Apr 2020 17:08

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