TBI Seminar: Microbial interactions involved in syntrophic growth
- Monday, March 25, 2019 from 3:10pm to 4:00pm
- Plant Biosciences Building, 108 - view map
Lee Krumholz is a professor in the Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology at the University of Oklahoma. He earned his bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the University of Guelph, Ontario and his PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign under the supervision of Marvin Bryant. He spent 3 years at Stanford University as a postdoc with Robert Simoni working on bacterial energy metabolism and then took a position at MIT in the department of civil engineering for 4 years. He moved to the University of Oklahoma where he has been since 1994. He is the author of 102 journal articles. If you would like to meet with Lee, email Brent Peyton at firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: In anaerobic environments, mutually beneficial metabolic interactions between microorganisms (syntrophy) are essential for oxidation of organic matter to carbon dioxide and methane. Syntrophic interactions typically involve a microorganism degrading an organic compound to primary fermentation byproducts and sources of electrons (i.e. formate, hydrogen, or nanowires) and a partner producing methane or respiring the electrons via alternative electron accepting processes. Using a transposon gene mutant library of the sulfate-reducing Desulfovibrio alaskensis G20, we screened for mutants incapable of serving as the electron-accepting partner of the butyrate-oxidizing bacterium, Syntrophomonas wolfei. Several membrane surface assembly and flagellum-pilus synthesis mutants showed reduced biofilm formation, suggesting that each of these components is involved in cell-to-cell interactions. Energy metabolism genes encoded proteins primarily involved in H2 uptake and electron cycling. Utilizing an mRNA sequencing approach, data confirmed that many of the above genes were more highly expressed under syntrophic conditions. Results imply that sulfate-reducing microorganisms require flagellar and outer membrane components and H2 and formate metabolism to effectively couple to their syntrophic partners.
Hosts: Brent Peyton and Robin Gerlach