DMS: Mondays in Microbiology

When: 15.30-17.05, 10 May 2021
Where: ZOOM
Free for all DMS members

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Professor Knut Drescher
Max Planck Institute, Germany

Dynamical processes in biofilm development and function

On surfaces, bacteria grow into multicellular communities termed biofilms, which are the most abundant form of life on Earth. Such biofilms cause many chronic and acute infections, which are difficult to treat because the cells inside these communities display strongly increased tolerance to antibiotics and disinfectants. I will first present imaging and image analysis techniques we recently developed to follow dynamical processes in biofilms at the single-cell level. Using these techniques, combined with physical models, I will show how we can reveal the key cell-cell interaction processes during biofilm growth across different species, and how biofilms respond to environmental stresses at the unicellular and multicellular level. 

Associate Professor Sine Lo Svenningsen
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Bacterial control of prophage induction and phage susceptibility by cell-to-cell signalling

The benefits of bacteriphage decision-making are most commonly described solely from the perspective of the bacteriophage. I will primarily use our research on the regulation of prophage induction in the fish pathogen Vibrio anguillarum to discuss how the host bacteria may actively affect these phage decisions through cell-to-cell signaling (quorum sensing). 
We demonstrate an intertwined regulation of phage-host interactions and biofilm formation, which is orchestrated by host quorum-sensing signaling, suggesting that increased lysogeny at high cell density is not solely a strategy for phages to piggy-back the successful bacterial hosts but is also a host strategy evolved to take control of the lysis-lysogeny switch to promote host fitness.