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PLoS Genet. 2009 Dec;5(12):e1000760. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000760. Epub 2009 Dec 11.

SOS response induces persistence to fluoroquinolones in Escherichia coli.

Author information

1
Antimicrobial Discovery Center, Department of Biology, Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Abstract

Bacteria can survive antibiotic treatment without acquiring heritable antibiotic resistance. We investigated persistence to the fluoroquinolone ciprofloxacin in Escherichia coli. Our data show that a majority of persisters to ciprofloxacin were formed upon exposure to the antibiotic, in a manner dependent on the SOS gene network. These findings reveal an active and inducible mechanism of persister formation mediated by the SOS response, challenging the prevailing view that persisters are pre-existing and formed purely by stochastic means. SOS-induced persistence is a novel mechanism by which cells can counteract DNA damage and promote survival to fluoroquinolones. This unique survival mechanism may be an important factor influencing the outcome of antibiotic therapy in vivo.

PMID:
20011100
PMCID:
PMC2780357
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pgen.1000760
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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