Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science


Microbiology and Immunology


Dr. Susan Koval


Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus is a prey dependent bacterium that traverses the outer membrane and peptidoglycan, and enters the periplasmic space of gram negative bacteria, from where it utilizes the cytoplasmic contents for growth. Soluble lytic transglycosylases could be responsible for creating the entry pore during predation. Bacteria can modify their peptidoglycan by the addition of acetate to the C-6 hydroxyl group of the N-acetylmuramic acid residues, which renders the peptidoglycan insensitive to cleavage by lytic transglycosylases. It was hypothesized that the degree of peptidoglycan O-acetylation of the prey cell affects predation efficiency. In this study it was shown that; (1) Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus 109J has minimal peptidoglycan O-acetylation while Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus 109JA, Bdellovibrio exovorus JSS, and Bacteriovorax stolpii UKi2 do not O-acetylate their peptidoglycan, (2) predation efficiency of Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus is affected by the degree of peptidoglycan O-acetylation, and (3) the lytic transglycosylase bd3575 is not essential for predation.

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