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Research Project: Biological Control of Invasive Weeds from Eurasia and Africa

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Title: Quorum-quenching : role in nature and applied developments

item GRANDCLEMENT, CATHERINE - National Council For Scientific Research-Cnrs
item TANNIERES, MELANIE - European Biological Control Laboratory (EBCL)
item MORERA, SOLANGE - National Council For Scientific Research-Cnrs
item DESSAUX, YVES - National Council For Scientific Research-Cnrs
item FAURE, DENIS - National Council For Scientific Research-Cnrs

Submitted to: FEMS Microbiology Reviews
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/21/2015
Publication Date: 10/1/2016
Citation: Grandclement, C., Tannieres, M., Morera, S., Dessaux, Y., Faure, D. 2016. Quorum-quenching: role in nature and applied developments. FEMS Microbiology Reviews. 40(1): 86-116. doi:10.1093/femsre/fuv038.

Interpretive Summary: Numerous bacterial populations are able to monitor their population density and regulate their gene expression accordingly through quorum sensing (QS). These bacteria use QS signals to coordinate and synchronize several behaviors under differing environments, including microbe–microbe and host–microbe interactions. Quorum quenching (QQ) refers to all processes involved in the disturbance of QS. QQ molecular actors are diverse in nature (enzymes, chemical compounds), mode of action (QS-signal cleavage, competitive inhibition, and so on) and targets, as all main steps of the QS pathway, including synthesis, diffusion, accumulation and perception of the QS signals may be affected. Investigations on QQ have extended to applied domains, such as to develop antibacterial and anti-disease strategies that target pathogens and invasive populations of microbes in medicine, agriculture and water engineering (biofouling causes problems in naval transportation, water distribution network…). The development of treatments based on QS interference is largely driven by the need for alternative or complementary approaches to phytochemicals and antibiotics. In this review, we aimed at describing the current knowledge of? QS interference in the fast moving field of research on QS. This paper reviews the diversity of QS signals and cognate functions the targets of QQ, and the mechanisms and molecular actors associated with QS disruption, including QQ enzymes and QS inhibitors, and their biological roles,. Finally, some applied developments using QS disruption are presented in a variety of fields such as medicine, aquaculture, anti-biofouling and crop production.

Technical Abstract: Quorum sensing (QS) refers to the capacity of bacteria to monitor their population density and regulate gene expression accordingly: the QS-regulated processes deal with multicellular behaviors (e.g. growth and development of biofilm), horizontal gene transfer and host–microbe (symbiosis and pathogenesis) and microbe–microbe interactions. QS signaling requires the synthesis, exchange and perception of bacterial compounds, called autoinducers or QS signals (e.g. N-acylhomoserine lactones). The disruption of QS signaling, also termed quorum quenching (QQ), encompasses very diverse phenomena and mechanisms which are presented and discussed in this review. First, we surveyed the QS-signal diversity and QS-associated responses for a better understanding of the targets of the QQ phenomena that organisms have naturally evolved and that are currently being actively investigated in applied perspectives. Next the mechanisms, targets and molecular actors associated with QS interference are presented, with a special emphasis on the description of natural QQ enzymes and chemicals acting as QS inhibitors. Selected QQ paradigms are detailed to exemplify the mechanisms and biological roles of QS inhibition in microbe–microbe and host–microbe interactions. Finally, some QQ strategies are presented as promising tools in different fields such as medicine, aquaculture, crop production and anti-biofouling area.