Gene expression characteristics of a cystic fibrosis epidemic strain of Pseudomonas aeruginosa during biofilm and planktonic growth

Jim Manos*, Jonathan Arthur, Barbara Rose, Scott Bell, Pholawat Tingpej, Honghua Hu, Jeremy Webb, Staffan Kjelleberg, Mark Douglas Gorrell, Peter Bye, Colin Harbour

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Epidemic Pseudomonas aeruginosa have been identified in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients worldwide. The Australian Epidemic Strain-2 (AES-2) infects up to 40% of patients in three eastern Australian CF clinics. To investigate whether AES-2 isolates from chronically infected CF adults differentially express well-conserved genes potentially associated with transmissibility, we compared the transcriptomes of planktonic and biofilm-grown AES-2, infrequent P. aeruginosa clones and the reference P. aeruginosa PAO1 using the Affymetrix PAO1 array. The most interesting findings emerged from comparisons of planktonic and biofilm AES-2. AES-2 biofilms upregulated Type III secretion system genes, but downregulated quorum-sensing (QS)-regulatory genes, except lasR, QS-regulated, oxidative-stress and iron-storage genes. QS-regulated and iron-storage genes were downregulated to a greater extent in AES-2 biofilms compared with infrequent clone and PAO1 biofilms, suggesting enhanced anaerobic respiration in AES-2. Chitinase and chitin-binding protein maintained high expression in AES-2 biofilms compared with infrequent clone and PAO1 biofilms. Planktonic AES-2 upregulated QS regulators and QS-regulated genes, iron acquisition and aerobic respiration genes, and had high expression of Group III Type IV pilA compared with low expression of Group I Type IV pilA in infrequent clones. Together, these properties may enhance long-term survival of AES-2 in CF lung and contribute to its transmissibility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-114
Number of pages8
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Volume292
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2009
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Epidemic clone
  • Infection
  • Microarray
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Quorum sensing

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