Responses of Listeria monocytogenes to Acid Stress and Glucose Availability Revealed by a Novel Combination of Fluorescence Microscopy and Microelectrode Ion-Selective Techniques
Shabala, L and Budde, B and Ross, T and Siegumfeldt, H and Jakobsen, M and McMeekin, TA, Responses of Listeria monocytogenes to Acid Stress and Glucose Availability Revealed by a Novel Combination of Fluorescence Microscopy and Microelectrode Ion-Selective Techniques, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 68, (4) pp. 1794-1802. ISSN 0099-2240 (2002) [Refereed Article]
Fluorescence ratio imaging microscopy and microelectrode ion flux estimation techniques were combined to study mechanisms of pH homeostasis in Listeria monocytogenes subjected to acid stress at different levels of glucose availability. This novel combination provided a unique opportunity to measure changes in H+ at either side of the bacterial membrane in real time and therefore to evaluate the rate of H+ flux across the bacterial plasma membrane and its contribution to bacterial pH homeostasis. Responses were assessed at external pHs (pHo) between 3.0 and 6.0 for three levels of glucose (0, 1, and 10 mM) in the medium. Both the intracellular pH (pHi) and net H+ fluxes were affected by the glucose concentration in the medium, with the highest absolute values corresponding to the highest glucose concentration. In the presence of glucose, the pHi remained above 7.0 within a pHo range of 4 to 6 and decreased below pHo 4. Above pHo 4, H+ extrusion increased correspondingly, with the maximum value at pHo 5.5, and below pHo 4, a net H+ influx was observed. Without glucose in the medium, the pHi decreased, and a net H+ influx was observed below pHo 5.5. A high correlation (R = 0.75 to 0.92) between the pHi and net H+ flux changes is reported, indicating that the two processes are complementary. The results obtained support other reports indicating that membrane transport processes are the main contributors to the process of pHi homeostasis in L. monocytogenes subjected to acid stress.