Send to

Choose Destination
Mol Microbiol. 1999 Jun;32(6):1166-72.

Visualization of membrane domains in Escherichia coli.

Author information

Department of Life Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, PO Box 653, Beer-Sheva 84105, Israel.


Bacterial membrane and nucleoids were stained concurrently by the lipophilic styryl dye FM 4-64 [N-(3-triethylammoniumpropyl)-4-(6-(4-(diethylamino)phenyl) hexatrienyl)pyridinium dibromide] and 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI), respectively, and studied using fluorescence microscopy imaging. Observation of plasmolysed cells indicated that FM 4-64 stained the inner membrane preferentially. In live Escherichia coli pbpB cells and filaments, prepared on wet agar slabs, an FM 4-64 staining pattern developed in the form of dark bands. In dividing cells, the bands occurred mainly at the constriction sites and, in filaments, between partitioning nucleoids. The FM 4-64 pattern of dark bands in filaments was abolished after inhibiting protein synthesis with chloramphenicol. It is proposed that the staining patterns reflect putative membrane domains formed by DNA-membrane interactions and have functional implications in cell division.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center