Vibrational spectroscopy combined with transcriptomic analysis for investigation of bacterial responses towards acid stress

Myintzu Hlaing, Bayden Wood, Don McNaughton, Julian Rood, Edward Fox, Mary Ann Augustin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The ability of bacteria to tolerate acid stress plays an important role in their growth and survival. In particular, aciduric bacteria have several survival systems that prevent cell damage from acid stress. In this study, the effect of the bacterial stress induced by pre-adaptation at different pH values on the cellular macromolecules of Lactobacillus plantarum was investigated using Raman spectroscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The expression of key genes was also quantified to provide understanding of the transcriptional response of the cells to lethal acid stress conditions. Principal component analysis of the spectra exhibited marked differences in the spectral regions associated with carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids for all acid-stressed cells compared to those of untreated control cells. The changes in spectroscopic and transcriptomic profiles that were observed revealed alterations in bacterial cell wall composition after acid treatment. The results suggest the existence of a complex bacterial stress response in which modifications of cellular compounds from pre-adaption at low pH are involved. This study demonstrates the potential application of vibrational spectroscopy techniques to discriminate between intact and injured bacterial cells as well as to study their stress responses after exposure to acid environments during food processing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-343
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Volume102
Issue number1
Early online date29 Oct 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018

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