FIGURE 1: Model of Mtb biofilm formation and dispersion.

(A) In response to TRS, Mtb cells downregulate DNA, RNA, and protein synthesis. Resources thus spared are diverted towards synthesis of polysaccharides and structural proteins that facilitate attachment with substratum and to nearby mycobacterial cells. We believe that cell density plays a critical role in this process. Therefore, quorum sensing and the underlying mechanisms could play an important role in mycobacterial decision to organise into biofilms.

(B) If the TRS is sustained for more than six hours, Mtb cells start adhering to surface. We hypothesize that unknown structural proteins, and uncharacterized polysaccharides play a critical role in this process.

(C) If the TRS is sustained beyond twelve hours, then cells are irreversibly attached to the substratum and start producing cellulose. By twenty nine hours, the Mtb biofilms are fully matured.

(D) Using localized production of cellulases and proteases, degradation of the EPS at the periphery of the Mtb biofilms could facilitate escape of few Mtb cells from the biofilms. These cells could then replicate under growth conducive conditions and upon reaching critical cell density could form biofilms.

Abbreviations: TRS – thiol reductive stress , Mtb – Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this. Please refer to our "privacy statement" and our "terms of use" for further information.