Kin discrimination modifies strain distribution, spatial segregation, and incorporation of extracellular matrix polysaccharide mutants of Bacillus subtilis strains into mixed floating biofilms
ID Bolješić, Maja (Author), ID Kraigher, Barbara (Author), ID Dogša, Iztok (Author), ID Jerič Kokelj, Barbara (Author), ID Mandić-Mulec, Ines (Author)

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Microorganisms in nature form multicellular groups called biofilms. In biofilms, bacteria embedded in the extracellular matrix (ECM) interact intensely due to their proximity. Most studies have investigated genetically homogeneous biofilms, leaving a gap in knowledge on genetically heterogeneous biofilms. Recent insights show that a Gram-positive model bacterium, Bacillus subtilis, discriminates between strains of high (kin) and low (nonkin) genetic similarity, reflected in merging (kin) and boundaries (nonkin) between swarms. However, it is unclear how kinship between interacting strains affects their fitness, the genotype assortment, and incorporation of the mutant lacking the main structural ECM polysaccharide (EpsA-O) into floating biofilms (pellicles). We cultivate Bacillus subtilis strains as mixtures of isogenic, kin and nonkin strain combinations in the biofilm-promoting medium (MSgg) in static conditions, allowing them to form pellicles. We show that in nonkin pellicles, the dominant strain strongly reduced the frequency of the other strain. Segregation of nonkin mixtures in pellicles increased and invasion of nonkin EpsA-O-deficient mutants into pellicles decreased compared to kin and isogenic floating biofilms. Kin and isogenic strains had comparable relative frequencies in pellicles and showed more homogenous cell mixing. Overall, our results emphasize kin discrimination as a social behavior that shapes strain distribution, spatial segregation and ECM mutant ability to incorporate into genetically heterogenous biofilms of B. subtilis.

Keywords:Bacillus subtilis, biofilms, kin discrimination, incorporation of extracellular matrix polysaccharide mutant
Work type:Article
Typology:1.01 - Original Scientific Article
Organization:BF - Biotechnical Faculty
Publication status:Published
Publication version:Version of Record
Number of pages:14 str.
Numbering:Vol. 88, iss. 18
PID:20.500.12556/RUL-142201 This link opens in a new window
ISSN on article:1098-5336
DOI:10.1128/aem.00871-22 This link opens in a new window
COBISS.SI-ID:117918979 This link opens in a new window
Publication date in RUL:25.10.2022
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Record is a part of a journal

Title:Applied and environmental microbiology
Shortened title:Appl. environ. microbiol.
Publisher:American Society for Microbiology
COBISS.SI-ID:2926612 This link opens in a new window


License:CC BY 4.0, Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
Description:This is the standard Creative Commons license that gives others maximum freedom to do what they want with the work as long as they credit the author.

Secondary language

Keywords:mikrobne združbe, biofilm, socialne interakcije, sorodstvena diskriminacija, zunajcelični polisaharidi


Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:P4-0116
Name:Mikrobiologija in biotehnologija živil in okolja

Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:J4-9302
Name:Raziskave medceličnih komunikacij v večceličnih skupnostih različnih izolatov bakterije iz rodu Bacillus

Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:J4-1775
Name:Razvoj mikropretočnih sistemov za analizo, izbor in uporabo bakterijskih celic

Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:J1-3021
Name:Platforma, osnovana na sintetičnih biofilmih za preučevanje in razvoj novih protibiofilmskih pristopov

Funder:EC - European Commission
Funding programme:H2020
Project number:811040
Name:Chair Of Micro Process Engineering and TEchnology

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