bioRxiv. 2023 Mar 2:2023.03.01.530729. doi: 10.1101/2023.03.01.530729. Preprint.
The biofilm matrix is composed of exopolysaccharides, eDNA, membrane vesicles, and proteins. While proteomic analyses have identified numerous matrix proteins, their functions in the biofilm remain understudied compared to the other biofilm components. In the Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm, several studies have identified OprF as an abundant matrix protein and, more specifically, as a component of biofilm membrane vesicles. OprF is a major outer membrane porin of P. aeruginosa cells. However, current data describing the effects of OprF in the P. aeruginosa biofilm is limited. Here we identify a nutrient-dependent effect of OprF in static biofilms, whereby Δ oprF cells form significantly less biofilm than wild type when grown in media containing glucose or low sodium chloride concentrations. Interestingly, this biofilm defect occurs during late static biofilm formation and is not dependent on the production of PQS, which is responsible for outer membrane vesicle production. Furthermore, while biofilms lacking OprF contain approximately 60% less total biomass than those of wild type, the number of cells in these two biofilms is equivalent. We demonstrate that P. aeruginosa Δ oprF biofilms with reduced biofilm biomass contain less eDNA than wild-type biofilms. These results suggest that the nutrient-dependent effect of OprF is involved in the maintenance of mature P. aeruginosa biofilms by retaining eDNA in the matrix.
IMPORTANCE: Many pathogens form biofilms, which are bacterial communities encased in an extracellular matrix that protects them against antibacterial treatments. The roles of several matrix components of the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa have been characterized. However, the effects of P. aeruginosa matrix proteins remain understudied and are untapped potential targets for antibiofilm treatments. Here we describe a conditional effect of the abundant matrix protein OprF on late-stage P. aeruginosa biofilms. A Δ oprF strain formed significantly less biofilm in low sodium chloride or with glucose. Interestingly, the defective Δ oprF biofilms did not exhibit fewer resident cells but contained significantly less extracellular DNA (eDNA) than wild type. These results suggest that OprF is involved in matrix eDNA retention in mature biofilms.
PMID:36909500 | PMC:PMC10002741 | DOI:10.1101/2023.03.01.530729