Virulence regulation

Phenotypic heterogeneity in bacterial pathogens: underlying mechanisms and role in plant adaptation


Carmen Beuzón López (IP), Javier Ruiz Albert (IP), Jose S. Rufián, Nieves López Pagán, Laura Mancera Miranda


Mª Antonia Sánchez Romero (US), Fernando Govantes Romero (UPO); Adam Schikora (Julius Kühn-Institut)

About the line

In this research line we investigate the mechanisms underlying phenotypic heterogeneity in the phytopathogenic bacteria Pseudomonas syringae, and its role in bacterial adaptation to the plant environment. We have described for the first time in a plant pathogen the existence of phenotypic heterogeneity in the expression of the T3SS, leading to the formation of phenotypic bacterial lineages differing in these key aspects of P. syringae virulence. Phenotypic heterogeneity is integrated into the bacterial regulatory network through an epigenetic mechanism, likely based on DNA methylation.

Recent publications (last 5 years)