Induction of the Persister Dormant State in Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia Coli by Agents Encountered in the Soil Environment

Date and Time

Location

Food Science building - lecture room 128

Details

DEFENCE ANNOUNCEMENT
Final Examination for the Degree of MSc Food Science for CHELSEY TREMBLAY


Examining Committee
Dr. Art Hill, Chair
Dr. Keith Warriner, Advisor
Dr. Joseph Odumeru, Advisory Committee Member
Dr. Gisele LaPointe, Department Member

TITLE: INDUCTION OF THE PERSISTER DORMANT STATE IN SHIGA TOXIN-PRODUCING
 ESCHERICHIA COLI BY AGENTS ENCOUNTERED IN THE SOIL ENVIRONMENT

ABSTRACT:
Persisters refer to a subpopulation of cells that enter a dormant state despite conditions being favorable for growth. By entering a dormant state cells exhibit high stress tolerance, in addition to temporary antibiotic resistance. The study illustrated that STEC serotypes exhibit a range of abilities to enter into the persister state and that indole may play a role in regulating transition into the dormant state. Studies focused on agents encountered in the field environment that could induce the persister state within STEC to explain the extended persistence of the pathogens within soil. It was found that E. coli O103 produced a greater proportion of persisters in comparison to both O157 and P36, a generic E. coli strain. The inclusion of 500 μM of indole increased the number of persisters formed by E. coli O103 compared to controls. Other agents tested did not statistically produce more persisters compared to controls although levels were highly variable between replicates.  The study illustrated that STEC serotypes exhibit a range of abilities to induce the persister state and that indole may play a role in regulating transition into the dormant state.

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