Cell-cell communication in bacteria involves the production, release, and subsequent detection of chemical signaling molecules called autoinducers. This process, called quorum sensing, allows bacteria to regulate gene expression on a population-wide scale. Processes controlled by quorum sensing are usually ones that are unproductive when undertaken by an individual bacterium but become effective when undertaken by the group. For example, quorum sensing controls bioluminescence, secretion of virulence factors, biofilm formation, and sporulation. New studies show that interfering with quorum sensing can be used to control bacterial virulence in globally important pathogens. These findings suggest an alternative to traditional antibiotics.
A reception will immediately follow in the first-floor atrium outside the lecture hall.
Broadcast to Heitler Hall at National Jewish Health.