Navigation Links
University of Arizona scientist shares in discovery of microbe filaments' power
Date:4/18/2008

Researchers from The University of Arizona and Columbia University have discovered that tiny filaments on bacteria can bundle together and pull with forces far stronger than experts had previously thought possible.

The team of researchers, including Magdalene Maggie So, a member of the BIO5 Institute and the department of immunobiology in the UA College of Medicine, studied Type IV pili or filaments on the surface of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, the bacterium that causes the infectious disease gonorrhea. The research results help them understand the role that Type IV pili play in initiating a variety of infectious diseases including tuberculosis and how retracting pili allow bacteria to crawl and to exchange genes with each other.

When a bundle of Type IV pili retracts, it pulls with a force in the nanoNewton range, which is 10 times the force of a single retracting filament. The study demonstrates the power and cooperative nature of the nanomotors that cause Type IV pili to retract.

The motor that causes these filaments to pull is one of the strongest nanomotors known in biology, So said.

In previous studies, the same group of investigators measured single filament retraction forces in the 50 to 100 picoNewton range. This force allows the bacterium to move an object 10,000 times its own body weight. Retraction forces from a bundle are roughly 10 times higher, allowing the bacterium to move objects 100,000 times its body weight.

Pilus retraction forces are an important factor in how N. gonorrhoeae starts an infection. So, who has studied these microbes for more than 20 years, says N. gonorrhoeae communicates with a human cell by pulling on it. These pulling forces perturb the normal circuitry of the cell. As a result, the infected cell is fooled into lowering its defenses against the infecting microbe.

So said that the team of investigators came up with a new method to measure the tremendous forces applied by retracting pili. They allow bacteria to sit on a dense brushwork of tiny elastic pillars. The pili attach to these pillars. When pili retract, they bend the pillars. By measuring how the pillars bend, the investigators calculate the retraction forces.


'/>"/>

Contact: Deborah Daun
ddaun@email.arizona.edu
520-626-2059
University of Arizona
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Flowers fragrance diminished by air pollution, University of Virginia study indicates
2. Pitt and University of Chicago researchers uncover process behind heart muscle contraction
3. Yale Universitys Strobel recognized for work on RNA
4. Womens health-related scientific findings presented by University of Pittsburgh researchers
5. Researchers at Stockholm University awarded the Descartes prize
6. Policing cells demand ID to tell friend from foe, say University of Pennsylvania cell engineers
7. Antarcticas coldest, darkest season draws Montana State University researchers
8. University of Colorado at Boulder awarded $1 million for biofuels research
9. Viruses evolve to play by host rules, according to University of Pennsylvania researchers
10. New whitepaper offers options for university implementation of NIH policy
11. Electronic structure of DNA revealed for 1st time by Hebrew University and collaborating researchers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/21/2016)... , June 21, 2016 NuData ... the new role of principal product architect and ... the director of customer development. Both will report ... technical officer. The moves reflect NuData,s strategic growth ... response to high customer demand and customer focus ...
(Date:6/16/2016)... FRANCISCO , June 16, 2016 ... size is expected to reach USD 1.83 ... by Grand View Research, Inc. Technological proliferation and ... banking applications are expected to drive the market ... ) , The development of advanced ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... June 9, 2016  Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is proud ... work hours, for employers to make sure the right employees are actually signing in, ... ... ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2016)... TORONTO , Nov. 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Portage ... Canadian Securities Exchange: PBT.U), is excited to announce ... company focused on developing preclinical ophthalmology assets through ... a potent anti-inflammatory created by Portage Pharmaceuticals Limited ... patients with ocular surface and anterior segment diseases. ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... 30, 2016  The Allen Institute for Cell ... first publicly available collection of gene edited, fluorescently ... key cellular structures with unprecedented clarity. Distributed through ... tools are a crucial first step toward visualizing ... what makes human cells healthy and what goes ...
(Date:11/30/2016)...  Tempus, a technology company focused on supporting ... Cancer Center have partnered to better determine which ... treatment based on next generation genomic and transcriptomic ... research collaboration, Tempus will provide sequencing and analysis ... to Penn. Utilizing next-generation sequencing, machine learning and ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... 30. November 2016   Merck , ... die Unterzeichnung einer Reihe von Vereinbarungen mit ... Evotec AG Screeningleistungen für Mercks Palette genetischer ... Zugriff auf diese Bibliotheken in Kombination mit ... schnelleren Weg zur Ermittlung und Erforschung neuer ...
Breaking Biology Technology: