Ecophysiology of Bacterial Lipid Remodelling

1:00pm - 2:00pm / Monday 4th March 2019 / Venue: Lecture Theatre 1 Life Sciences Building
Type: Seminar / Category: Research / Series: GSTT Seminar Series
  • Suitable for: Staff and students with an interest in Genomes, Systems and Therapeutic Targeting
  • Admission: Free
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Speaker: Yin Chen

Membrane lipids form the structural basis of all cells. In bacteria Escherichia coli uses predominantly phosphorus-containing phospholipids in its cell envelope, including phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidylglycerol. However, beyond E. coli a range of lipids are found in bacterial membranes, including phospholipids as well as phosphorus (P)-free lipids such as betaine lipids, ornithine lipids, sulfolipids and glycolipids. It is well established that P availability significantly affects lipid composition in bacteria, whereby non-P sulfur-containing lipids are used to substitute phospholipids in response to P stress. This remodeling offers a significant competitive advantage for these organisms, allowing them to adapt to oligotrophic environments low in P. In this seminar, I will introduce the lipidomics approaches we use to characterise some novel microbial lipids which we have recently identified in several model bacteria and discuss the ecological and physiological consequences of lipid remodeling in bacteria.