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Bacterial adhesion pili
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Physics. (The Biophysics and Biophotonics group)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9835-3263
2018 (English)In: Membrane protein complexes: structure and function / [ed] J. Robin Harris, Egbert Boekema, Springer Publishing Company, 2018, , p. 18p. 1-18Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Escherichia coli bacterial cells produce multiple types of adhesion pili that mediate cell-cell and cell-host attachments. These pili (also called 'fimbriae') are large biopolymers that are comprised of subunits assembled via a sophisticated micro-machinery into helix-like structures that are anchored in the bacterial outer membrane. They are commonly essential for initiation of disease and thus provide a potential target for antibacterial prevention and treatment. To develop new therapeutics for disease prevention and treatment we need to understand the molecular mechanisms and the direct role of adhesion pili during pathogenesis. These helix-like pilus structures possess fascinating and unique biomechanical properties that have been thoroughly investigated using high-resolution imaging techniques, force spectroscopy and fluid flow chambers. In this chapter, we first discuss the structure of pili and the micro-machinery responsible for the assembly process. Thereafter, we present methods for measurement of the biomechanics of adhesion pili, including optical tweezers. Data demonstrate unique biomechanical properties of pili that allow bacteria to sustain binding during in vivo fluid shear forces. We thereafter summarize the current biomechanical findings related to adhesion pili and show that pili biomechanical properties are niche-specific. That is, the data suggest that there is an organ-specific adaptation of pili that facilitates infection of the bacteria's target tissue. Thus, pilus biophysical properties are an important part of Escherichia coli pathogenesis, allowing bacteria to overcome hydrodynamic challenges in diverse environments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Publishing Company, 2018. , p. 18p. 1-18
Series
Subcellular Biochemistry, ISSN 0306-0225 ; 87
Keywords [en]
Fimbriae, Pilins, Pathogenesis, Virulence factors, Optical tweezers
National Category
Structural Biology Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-145352DOI: 10.1007/978-981-10-7757-9_1ISBN: 978-981-10-7757-9 (electronic)ISBN: 978-981-10-7756-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-145352DiVA, id: diva2:1186752
Available from: 2018-03-01 Created: 2018-03-01 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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Andersson, Magnus

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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