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Mol Microbiol. 2010 Sep;77(6):1346-50.

A path from predation to mutualism.

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AMAbiotics SAS, Genavenir 8, 5 rue Henri Desbruères, 91030 Evry Cedex, France.


Luminescent bacteria and nematodes associate in a strategy where the bacteria act as virulent pathogens of insects, used as their food supply, while the nematodes graze on them. Upon reaching high density, the bacteria produce light and metabolites that turn the nematodes into hosts permitting them to be carried over to further nematode preys. In this issue of Molecular Microbiology, Lango and Clarke show that the corresponding shift in lifestyle is triggered by a metabolic switch closely linked to the tricarboxylic acid cycle, but apparently not by the well-known acetate switch that monitors entry of bacteria into the stationary phase of growth.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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