Evidence of DNA transfer through F-pilus channels during Escherichia coli conjugation

An Chi Shu, Chien Chen Wu, Yi Yang Chen, Hwei-Ling Peng, Hwan You Chang, Tri Rung Yew*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

The mechanism of DNA transfer from Escherichia coli (E. coli) Hfr donor strain AT2453 to recipient strain AB1157 during the conjugation process has been investigated by liquid atomic force microscopy (AFM). With the success of immobilizing both E. coli strains on gelatin-treated glass under aqueous solution, the F-pilus between an E. coli mating pair could be clearly imaged and dissected by an AFM probe. Another AFM probe functionalized with an anti-single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) antibody was then applied to detect transferring ssDNA. According to the AFM force spectrum, the transferring ssDNA could be detected only in the dissected area with a binding force of 109 ± 5 pN measured. Our results provide direct evidence indicating that the DNA was transferred through the F-pilus channel between an E. coli mating pair during their conjugation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6796-6802
Number of pages7
JournalLangmuir
Volume24
Issue number13
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2008

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    Shu, A. C., Wu, C. C., Chen, Y. Y., Peng, H-L., Chang, H. Y., & Yew, T. R. (2008). Evidence of DNA transfer through F-pilus channels during Escherichia coli conjugation. Langmuir, 24(13), 6796-6802. https://doi.org/10.1021/la703384n