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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1993 Feb;59(2):473-8.

Roles of N-acetylglutaminylglutamine amide and glycine betaine in adaptation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to osmotic stress.

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  • 1Plant Growth Laboratory, University of California, Davis 95616.


The mechanism of osmotic stress adaptation in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 was investigated. By using natural abundance 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, osmotically stressed cultures were found to accumulate glutamate, trehalose, and N-acetylglutaminylglutamine amide, an unusual dipeptide previously reported only in osmotically stressed Rhizobium meliloti and Pseudomonas fluorescens. The intracellular levels of these osmolytes were dependent on the chemical composition and the osmolality of the growth medium. It was also demonstrated that glycine betaine, a powerful osmotic stress protectant, participates in osmoregulation in this organism. When glycine betaine or its precursors, phosphorylcholine or choline, were added to the growth medium, growth rates of cultures in 0.7 M NaCl were increased more than threefold. Furthermore, enhancement of growth could be observed with as little as 10 microM glycine betaine or precursor added to the medium. Finally, the mechanism of osmotic stress adaptation of two clinical isolates of P. aeruginosa was found to be nearly identical to that of the laboratory strain PAO1 in all aspects studied.

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