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Pressure and temperature dependence of growth and morphology of Escherichia coli: experiments and stochastic model



Pressure and temperature dependence of growth and morphology of Escherichia coli: experiments and stochastic model



Biophysical Journal 105(3): 783-793



We have investigated the growth of Escherichia coli, a mesophilic bacterium, as a function of pressure (P) and temperature (T). Escherichia coli can grow and divide in a wide range of pressure (1-400 atm) and temperature (23-40°C). For T > 30°C, the doubling time of E. coli increases exponentially with pressure and exhibits a departure from exponential behavior at pressures between 250 and 400 atm for all the temperatures studied in our experiments. The sharp change in doubling time is followed by a sharp change in phenotypic transition of E. coli at high pressures where bacterial cells switch to an elongating cell type. We propose a model that this phenotypic change in bacteria at high pressures is an irreversible stochastic process, whereas the switching probability to elongating cell type increases with increasing pressure. The model fits well the experimental data. We discuss our experimental results in the light of structural and thus functional changes in proteins and membranes.

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Accession: 055145424

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 23931326

DOI: 10.1016/j.bpj.2013.06.029


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