Evolution of high torque flagellar motors and coevolution of cell plan in the Campylobacterota

Microbiology Seminar Series

  • Date: Apr 19, 2021
  • Time: 16:00
  • Speaker: Dr. Morgan Beeby
  • Imperial College London, Department of Life Sciences
  • Location: Zoom
  • Host: Dr. Georg Hochberg
  • Contact: georg.hochberg@mpi-marburg.mpg.de

Molecular and microbial evolution remains less well studied than that of large eukaryotes. Bacterial flagella are ideal model systems to address this gap: they are widespread and many have diverse additional proteins (making comparative studies easy and useful), non-essential yet beneficial (enabling inactivation yet also selection), large (rendering in situ structural studies easy), and have an easily measured phenotype of rotational torque and speed. Nevertheless, the field lacks a unified narrative describing evolution of diversity in bacterial flagella: what new proteins have been recruited, and to which flagellar subtypes? What was the phenotypic impact of these additions? What interdependencies exist between new proteins and essential core proteins? How did new proteins become essential? How does motor output interact with cell size and shape, and flagellar placement?. Here we discuss comparative studies to understand the evolution of bacterial flagellar diversity, focusing on the Campylobacterota (previously Epsilonproteobacteria). Our findings suggest substantial interaction and interdependent co-evolution of increased motor torque with other aspects including cell shape and flagellar filament composition.

Go to Editor View