UBC Faculty Research and Publications

The Arginine Catabolism-Derived Amino Acid l-ornithine Is a Chemoattractant for Pseudomonas aeruginosa Dhodary, Basanta; Sampedro, Inmaculada; Behroozian, Shekooh; Borza, Victor; Her, Stephanie; Hill, Jane E.


Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a common, opportunistic bacterial pathogen among patients with cystic fibrosis, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. During the course of these diseases, l-ornithine, a non-proteinogenic amino acid, becomes more abundant. P. aeruginosa is chemotactic towards other proteinogenic amino acids. Here, we evaluated the chemotaxis response of P. aeruginosa towards l-ornithine. Our results show that l-ornithine serves as a chemoattractant for several strains of P. aeruginosa, including clinical isolates, and that the chemoreceptors involved in P. aeruginosa PAO1 are PctA and PctB. It seems likely that P. aeruginosa’s chemotactic response to l-ornithine might be a common feature and thus could potentially contribute to pathogenesis processes during colonization and infection scenarios.

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