Inhibitory Effect of Taurine on Biofilm Formation During Alkane Degradation in Acinetobacter oleivorans DR1

Hyo Jung Eom, Woojun Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Taurine, 2-aminoethanesulfonate, is known to function as an antioxidant or membrane stabilizer in eukaryotic cells, but its role in bacteria has been poorly characterized. Biofilm formation of Acinetobacter oleivorans DR1 was significantly reduced by taurine only during alkane degradation, suggesting that taurine affects alkane-induced cell surface. Structurally similar compounds harboring an amine group such as hypotaurine or ethylenediamine have a similar effect, which was not observed with sulfonate-containing chemicals such as ethanesulfonic acid, hexanesulfonic acid. Our biochemical assays and physiological tests demonstrate that taurine reduced cell surface hydrophobicity, which resulted in interruption of the interactions between cells and oily substrate surfaces, such that cells utilized alkanes less effectively. Interestingly, taurine-mediated reduction of quorum sensing (QS) signal production and QS-control sapA gene expression indicated that membrane permeability of quorum signals was also interfered by taurine. Composition and biomass of extracellular polymeric saccharides were changed in taurine-amended conditions. Taken together, our data provide evidence that amine-containing taurine can inhibit biofilm formation of DR1 cells during alkane degradation by (i) changing cell surface charge and (ii) reducing membrane hydrophobicity and QS sensing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)821-831
Number of pages11
JournalMicrobial Ecology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Nov 1


  • Acinetobacter oleivorans
  • Biofilm
  • Hydrophobicity
  • Oil-degrading bacteria
  • Taurine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology
  • Soil Science


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