In this study, we investigated differentially expressed proteins in Acinetobacter oleivorans cells during planktonic and biofilm growth by using 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis combined with matrix-assisted laser desorption time-of-flight mass spectrometry. We focused on the role of oxidative stress resistance during biofilm formation using mutants defective in alkyl hydroperoxide reductase (AhpC) because its production in aged biofilms was enhanced compared to that in planktonic cells. Results obtained using an ahpC promoter-gfp reporter vector showed that aged biofilms expressed higher ahpC levels than planktonic cells at 48 h. However, at 24 h, ahpC expression was higher in planktonic cells than in biofilms. Deletion of ahpC led to a severe growth defect in rich media that was not observed in minimal media and promoted early biofilm formation through increased production of exopolysaccharide (EPS) and EPS gene expression. Increased endogenous H2O2 production in the ahpC mutant in rich media enhanced biofilm formation, and this enhancement was not observed in the presence of antioxidants. Exogenous addition of H2O2 promoted biofilm formation in wild type cells, which suggested that biofilm development is linked to defense against H 2 O 2. Collectively, our data showed that EPS production caused by H2O2 stress enhances biofilm formation in A. oleivorans.
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