Bacteria are social creatures that are able to interact and coordinate behaviors with each other in a multitude of ways. The study of such group behaviors in microbes was coined “sociomicrobiology” in 2005. Two such group behaviors in bacteria are quorum sensing (QS) and biofilm formation. At a very basic level, QS is the ability to sense bacterial density via cell-to-cell signaling using self-produced signals called autoinducers, and biofilms are aggregates of cells that are attached to one another via a self-produced, extracellular matrix. Since cells in biofilm aggregates are in close proximity, biofilms represent an ecologically relevant environment for QS. While QS is known to affect biofilm formation in both Gram-negative and Gram-positive species, in this review, we will focus exclusively on Gram-negative bacteria, with an emphasis on Pseudomonas aeruginosa
. We will begin by describing QS systems in P. aeruginosa
and how they affect P. aeruginosa
biofilm formation. We then expand our review to other Gram-negative bacteria and conclude with interesting questions with regard to the effect of biofilms on QS.
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