The capacity of Listeria monocytogenes mutants with in-frame deletions in putative ATP-binding cassette transporters to form biofilms and comparison with the wild type

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Marina Ceruso
Pina Fratamico
Claudia Chirollo
Rosanna Taglialatela
Maria Luisa Cortesi
Tiziana Pepe *
(*) Corresponding Author:
Tiziana Pepe | tiziana.pepe@unina.it

Abstract

Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) is a food-borne pathogen responsible for human listeriosis, an invasive infection with high mortality rates. Lm has developed efficient strategies for survival under stress conditions such as starvation and wide variations in temperature, pH, and osmolarity. Therefore, Lm can survive in food under multiple stress conditions. Detailed studies to determine the mode of action of this pathogen for survival under stress conditions are important to control Lm in food. It has been shown that genes encoding for ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters are induced in Lm in food, in particular under stress conditions. Previous studies showed that these genes are involved in sensitivity to nisin, acids, and salt. The aim of this study was to determine the involvement of some ABC transporters in biofilm formation. Therefore, deletion mutants of ABC transporter genes (LMOf2365_1875 and LMOf2365_1877) were created in Lm F2365, and then were compared to the wild type for their capacity to form biofilms. Lm strain F2365 was chosen as reference since the genome is fully sequenced and furthermore this strain is particularly involved in food-borne outbreaks of listeriosis. Our results showed that DLMOf2365_1875 had an increased capacity to form biofilms compared to the wild type, indicating that LMOf2365_1875 negatively regulates biofilm formation. A deeper knowledge on the ability to form biofilms in these mutants may help in the development of intervention strategies to control Lm in food and in the environment.

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