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Escherichia coli mar and acrAB Mutants Display No Tolerance to Simple Alcohols
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Chemistry, Department of Biochemistry and Organic Chemistry.
2010 (English)In: International Journal of Molecular Sciences, ISSN 1422-0067, Vol. 11, no 4, 1403-1412 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The inducible Mar phenotype of Escherichia coli is associated with increased tolerance to multiple hydrophobic antibiotics as well as some highly hydrophobic organic solvents such as cyclohexane, mediated mainly through the AcrAB/TolC efflux system. The influence of water miscible alcohols ethanol and 1-propanol on a Mar constitutive mutant and a mar deletion mutant of E. coli K-12, as well as the corresponding strains carrying the additional acrAB deletion, was investigated. In contrast to hydrophobic solvents, all strains were killed in exponential phase by 1-propanol and ethanol at rates comparable to the parent strain. Thus, the Mar phenotype does not protect E. coli from killing by these more polar solvents. Surprisingly, AcrAB does not contribute to an increased alcohol tolerance. In addition, sodium salicylate, at concentrations known to induce the mar operon, was unable to increase 1-propanol or ethanol tolerance. Rather, the toxicity of both solvents was increased in the presence of sodium salicylate. Collectively, the results imply that the resilience of E. coli to water miscible alcohols, in contrast to more hydrophobic solvents, does not depend upon the AcrAB/TolC efflux system, and suggests a lower limit for substrate molecular size and functionality. Implications for the application of microbiological systems in environments containing high contents of water miscible organic solvents, e. g., phage display screening, are discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 11, no 4, 1403-1412 p.
Keyword [en]
solvent tolerance, salicylate, ethanol, 1-propanol, mar regulon, hydrophobicity, solvent
National Category
Chemical Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-136304DOI: 10.3390/ijms11041403ISI: 000277119800011OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-136304DiVA: diva2:377155
Available from: 2010-12-13 Created: 2010-12-11 Last updated: 2010-12-13Bibliographically approved

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