Document Detail

Cannibalism: a social behavior in sporulating Bacillus subtilis.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20955377     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
A social behavior named cannibalism has been described during the early stages of sporulation of the Gram-positive Bacillus subtilis. This phenomenon is based on the heterogeneity of sporulating populations, constituted by at least two cell types: (1) sporulating cells, in which the master regulator of sporulation Spo0A is active, and (2) nonsporulating cells, in which Spo0A is inactive. Sporulating cells produce two toxins that act cooperatively to kill the nonsporulating sister cells. The nutrients released by the dead cells into the starved medium are used for growth by the sporulating cells that are not yet fully committed to sporulate, and as a result, sporulation is arrested. This review outlines the molecular mechanisms of the killing and immunity to the toxins, the regulation of their production and other examples of killing of siblings in microorganisms. The biological significance of this behavior is discussed.
José Eduardo González-Pastor
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2010-10-19
Journal Detail:
Title:  FEMS microbiology reviews     Volume:  35     ISSN:  1574-6976     ISO Abbreviation:  FEMS Microbiol. Rev.     Publication Date:  2011 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-04-04     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8902526     Medline TA:  FEMS Microbiol Rev     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  415-24     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
© 2010 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.
Department of Molecular Evolution, Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Madrid, Spain.
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