A purely Lamarckian ‘evolution’ permits survival of a bacterium to a lethal stressor

Microbiology Seminar Series

  • Date: May 25, 2020
  • Time: 16:00
  • Speaker: Prof. Dr. Christopher Marx
  • University of Idaho, Department of Biological Sciences, USA
  • Location: Zoom, Webinar
  • Room: -
  • Host: Prof. Dr. Tobias Erb
  • Contact: toerb@mpi-marburg.mpg.de

Microbes are often thought of as populations of genetically identical cells that inhabit a uniform environment and behave in a uniform way. However, more and more counter-examples to this assumption of phenotypic homogeneity are being discovered. In most such described examples, bacterial cells were found to split into two discrete populations. Here, we report the discovery of a novel example of microbial phenotypic heterogeneity in which cells are distributed along a gradient of phenotypes: low to high tolerance of a toxic chemical. We demonstrate that this distribution of phenotypes changes across growth conditions, yet displays a degree of phenotypic inheritance.

Go to Editor View