PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL CONTROL OF GROWTH AND VIABILITY Overview Bacteria can talk to each other via molecules they produce themselves. In this way, bacteria can synchronize together and function as one large unit or colony. The phenomenon is called quorum sensing, and is important to bacterial metabolism, growth and virulence. Watch the following video on “How Bacteria Talk”, then read the link below on “Quorum Sensing” to learn more. Bassler, B.(2009). How Bacteria “talk”. Accessed at http://www.ted.com/talks/bonnie_bassler_on_how_bacteria_communicate#t-1038504 on September 14, 2016. What is Quorum Sensing? Accessed at https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/quorum/what.htm on September 14, 2016. Instructions Prepare a 2- to 3-page paper in which you address the following questions:
- How would you define quorum sensing in bacteria?
- How can quorum sensing improve nutrient delivery to bacteria?
- Not all bacterial relationships are harmful like the example Dr. Bassler gave for the squid and bacterial bioluminescence. Describe an example of a microbial relationship in the human body that is beneficial. Which body system is involved (intestinal tract, skin, etc.)? Which bacterial species is involved? How is it beneficial for both the bacterium and host?
- What does the concept of quorum sensing mean for virulence and disease in humans?
- Based on Dr. Bassler’s research on quorum sensing, what might the “next generation” of antibiotics look like? How might they work?