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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2008 Sep;74(17):5466-74. doi: 10.1128/AEM.00222-08. Epub 2008 Jul 7.

Effect of flagellar mutations on Yersinia enterocolitica biofilm formation.

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Department of Food Science and Technology, University of California at Davis, One Shields Avenue, Davis, California 95616, USA.


Yersinia enterocolitica biovar 1B is one of a number of strains pathogenic to humans in the genus Yersinia. It has three different type III secretion systems, Ysc, Ysa, and the flagella. In this study, the effect of flagella on biofilm formation was evaluated. In a panel of 31 mutant Y. enterocolitica strains, we observed that mutations that abolish the structure or rotation of the flagella greatly reduce biofilm formation when the bacteria are grown under static conditions. These results were further evaluated by assessing biofilm formation under continuous culture using a flow cell chamber. The results confirmed the important contribution of flagella to the initiation of biofilm production but indicated that there are differences in the progression of biofilm development between static growth and flow conditions. Our results suggest that flagella play a critical role in biofilm formation in Y. enterocolitica.

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