Communication between species from different kingdoms may be as important as intra-kingdom communication. It has recently been confirmed that co-existing bacteria and phytoplankton in aquatic ecosystems do cross-talk. This study examined the signs of possible cross signalling between V. harveyi, one of the predominant bacterial species of the marine ecosystem and a dominant diatom species, S.marinoi, to understand communication over species borders. It is known that V.harveyi employ quorum sensing for cell-to-cell communication, bioluminescence (luxR), and the regulation of the virulence gene (vhp, chiA). Former studies have also shown, this kind of interactions being disrupted by compounds secreted by a few algal species existing in the aquatic ecosystem. We investigated the QS communication by quantifying the expression levels of virulence regulator luxR and virulence factors metalloprotease (vhp) and chitinase (chiA) in four different V. harveyi strains grown in the presence of S. marinoi strain. Results obtained in this study indicate that quorum sensing was activated in strains of V. harveyi analysed but did not regulate the expressions of vhp and chiA virulence factors. This observation suggests that the existence of S. marinoi did not interfere with the QS behaviour of V. harveyi and its interaction with marine diatom; it may be due to the commensalism relationship.
Quorum sensing (QS), diatom-bacteria relationship, Skeletonema, harveyi clade vibrios, virulence gene expression
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