Expert Reviews in Molecular Medicine

Review Article

Interference of Pseudomonas aeruginosa signalling and biofilm formation for infection control

Thomas Bjarnsholta1a2, Tim Tolker-Nielsena1, Niels Høibya1a2 and Michael Givskova1 c1

a1 Department of International Health, Immunology and Microbiology, University of Copenhagen, 2200 Copenhagen, Denmark.

a2 Department of Clinical Microbiology, University Hospital, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark.

Abstract

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the best described bacterium with regards to quorum sensing (QS), in vitro biofilm formation and the development of antibiotic tolerance. Biofilms composed of P. aeruginosa are thought to be the underlying cause of many chronic infections, including those in wounds and in the lungs of patients with cystic fibrosis. In this review, we provide an overview of the molecular mechanisms involved in QS, QS-enabled virulence, biofilm formation and biofilm-enabled antibiotic tolerance. We now have substantial knowledge of the multicellular behaviour of P. aeruginosa in vitro. A major task for the future is to investigate how such in vitro data correlate with the in vivo behaviour of P. aeruginosa, and how to treat chronic infections of this bacterium in patients.

Correspondence

c1 Corresponding author: Michael Givskov, Department of International Health, Immunology and Microbiology, University of Copenhagen, Blegdamsvej 3B, 2200 Copenhagen, Denmark. E-mail: Mgivskov@sund.ku.dk