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Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA Vol. 95, pp. 1021810223, August 1998
 

Summary: Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA
Vol. 95, pp. 1021810223, August 1998
Microbiology
Propagation by sporulation in the guinea pig symbiont
Metabacterium polyspora
ESTHER R. ANGERT AND RICHARD M. LOSICK*
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University, The Biological Laboratories, 16 Divinity Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138
Contributed by Richard M. Losick, June 17, 1998
ABSTRACT The Gram-positive bacterium Metabacterium
polyspora is an uncultivated symbiont of the guinea pig gas-
trointestinal tract. Here we present evidence that in M.
polyspora vegetative cell division has taken on a minor, and
apparently dispensable, role in propagation. Instead, this
unusual bacterium has evolved the capacity to produce prog-
eny in the form of multiple endospores. Endospore formation
is coordinated with transit of the bacterium through the
gastrointestinal tract of the guinea pig. For the majority of
cells, sporulation is initiated in the ileum, whereas later stages
of development take place in the cecum. We show that multiple
endospores are generated both by asymmetric division at both

  

Source: Angert, Esther - Department of Microbiology, Cornell University

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine