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Tracking the Dynamic Relationship between Cellular Systems and Extracellular Subproteomes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa Biofilms

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journal contribution
posted on 06.11.2015, 00:00 by Amber J. Park, Kathleen Murphy, Matthew D. Surette, Christopher Bandoro, Jonathan R. Krieger, Paul Taylor, Cezar M. Khursigara
The transition of the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa from free-living bacteria into surface-associated biofilm communities represents a viable target for the prevention and treatment of chronic infectious disease. We have established a proteomics platform that identified 2443 and 1142 high-confidence proteins in P. aeruginosa whole cells and outer-membrane vesicles (OMVs), respectively, at three time points during biofilm development (ProteomeXchange identifier PXD002605). The analysis of cellular systems, specifically the phenazine biosynthetic pathway, demonstrates that whole-cell protein abundance correlates to end product (i.e., pyocyanin) concentrations in biofilm but not in planktonic cultures. Furthermore, increased cellular protein abundance in this pathway results in quantifiable pyocyanin in early biofilm OMVs and OMVs from both growth modes isolated at later time points. Overall, our data indicate that the OMVs being released from the surface of the biofilm whole cells have unique proteomes in comparison to their planktonic counterparts. The relative abundance of OMV proteins from various subcellular sources showed considerable differences between the two growth modes over time, supporting the existence and preferential activation of multiple OMV biogenesis mechanisms under different conditions. The consistent detection of cytoplasmic proteins in all of the OMV subproteomes challenges the notion that OMVs are composed of outer membrane and periplasmic proteins alone. Direct comparisons of outer-membrane protein abundance levels between OMVs and whole cells shows ratios that vary greatly from 1:1 and supports previous studies that advocate the specific inclusion, or “packaging”, of proteins into OMVs. The quantitative analysis of packaged protein groups suggests biogenesis mechanisms that involve untethered, rather than absent, peptidoglycan-binding proteins. Collectively, individual protein and biological system analyses of biofilm OMVs show that drug-binding cytoplasmic proteins and porins are potentially shuttled from the whole cell into the OMVs and may contribute to the antibiotic resistance of P. aeruginosa whole cells within biofilms.