Bacterial resistance to arsenic protects against protist killing

Hao, Xiuli and Li, Xuanji and Pal, Chandan and Hobman, Jon L. and Larsson, D.G. Joakim and Saquib, Quaiser and Alwathnani, Hend A. and Rosen, Barry P. and Zhu, Yong-Guan and Rensing, Christopher (2017) Bacterial resistance to arsenic protects against protist killing. BioMetals, 30 (2). pp. 307-311. ISSN 1572-8773

[img] PDF - Repository staff only until 16 February 2018. - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (1MB)

Abstract

Protists kill their bacterial prey using toxic metals such as copper. Here we hypothesize that the metalloid arsenic has a similar role. To test this hypothesis, we examined intracellular survival of Escherichia coli (E. coli) in the amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum (D. discoideum). Deletion of the E. coli ars operon led to significantly lower intracellular survival compared to wild type E. coli. This suggests that protists use arsenic to poison bacterial cells in the phagosome, similar to their use of copper. In response to copper and arsenic poisoning by protists, there is selection for acquisition of arsenic and copper resistance genes in the bacterial prey to avoid killing. In agreement with this hypothesis, both copper and arsenic resistance determinants are widespread in many bacterial taxa and environments, and they are often found together on plasmids. A role for heavy metals and arsenic in the ancient predator–prey relationship between protists and bacteria could explain the widespread presence of metal resistance determinants in pristine environments.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10534-017-0003-4
Keywords: Protist; Grazing; Arsenic
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Biosciences > Division of Food Sciences
Identification Number: 10.1007/s10534-017-0003-4
Depositing User: Hobman, Jon
Date Deposited: 30 May 2017 08:43
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2017 00:25
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/43238

Actions (Archive Staff Only)

Edit View Edit View