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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2005 Sep 30;335(3):659-66.

LuxS/autoinducer-2 quorum sensing molecule regulates transcriptional virulence gene expression in Clostridium difficile.

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Microbial Pathogenesis Laboratory, Department of Microbiology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore.


Toxigenic Clostridium difficile CCUG19126 produces the autoinducer-2 (AI-2) quorum sensing molecule that induces bioluminescence in Vibrio harveyi BB170 reporter strain. AI-2-containing cell-free supernatants from mid-log phase C. difficile and Escherichia coli DH5alpha expressing recombinant luxS(cd) upregulated the transcript levels of tcdA (7-10-fold), tcdB (4-6-fold), and tcdE (2-3-fold) in early-log C. difficile. In contrast, no induction occurred when cells were exposed to sterile medium or to cell-free supernatant from E. coli DH5alpha. AI-2 did not significantly increase the level of toxin A in early-log C. difficile. These results suggest that LuxS(cd)-dependent signaling regulates virulence gene expression at the transcriptional level in C. difficile.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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