Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Bioenergy Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #266446

Title: Chemotaxis of Pseudomonas to furans

item Nichols, Nancy
item DITTY, J - University Of St Thomas
item LUNDE, T - University Of St Thomas
item HALLOCK, K - University Of St Thomas
item SOUTHERN, R - University Of St Thomas
item KOWALCHYK, C - University Of St Thomas

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/24/2011
Publication Date: 5/24/2011
Citation: Nichols, N.N., Ditty, J.L., Lunde, T.A., Hallock, K.A., Southern, R., Kowalchyk, C. 2011. Chemotaxis of Pseudomonas to furans[abstract]. American Society for Microbiology. Paper No. 2292.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Background: Furfural (2-furaldehyde) is a furan compound formed by dehydration of pentose sugars. Furan molecules occur naturally in the environment and are also used industrially as solvents and chemical precursors. Although furan aldehydes are microbial inhibitors, a number of microbes can utilize these compounds as a source of carbon and energy. Despite its inhibitory effects, some bacteria such as Pseudomonas putida can metabolize furfural through conversion to 2-oxoglutarate, via 2-furoic acid and Coenzyme A intermediates. However, little is known about the ability of furan-degrading microbes to detect these compounds in the environment. Methods: In this study, P. putida strains Fu-1 and A3 were used in qualitative and quantitative assays to assess chemotaxis to furan molecules. Results: Qualitative swarm plate and agarose-plug assays revealed that both P. putida strains were attracted to the furan molecules furfural, furfuryl alcohol, furoic acid, and 5-hydroxymethylfurfural, and/or their metabolic intermediates. In quantitative capillary assays, P. putida Fu-1 responded optimally to 5 mM 2-furoic acid, and the response to 2-furoic acid was inducible by growth on furans. Initial investigations have also determined that the inducible chemotactic response is regulated in conjunction with furfural degradation genes. Conclusions: Pseudomonas species were found to be attracted to furan compounds.