Homeostasis of cellular amino acids in Acanthamoeba castellanii exposed to different media under amoeba-bacteria coculture conditions

Chih Ming Tsai, Chun Hsien Chen, Wei Hung Cheng, Foekje F. Stelma, Sung Chou Li, Wei Chen Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Acanthamoeba castellanii is a free-living protist that feeds on diverse bacteria. A. castellanii has frequently been utilized in studies on microbial interactions. Grazing bacteria also exhibit diverse effects on the physiological characteristics of amoebae, such as their growth, encystation, and cytotoxicity. Since the composition of amoebae amino acids is closely related to cellular activities, it can indicate the overall responses of A. castellanii to various stimuli. Method: A. castellanii was exposed to different culture conditions in low-nutrient medium with heat-killed DH5α to clarify their effects. A targeted metabolomic technique was utilized to evaluate the concentration of cellular amino acids. The amino acid composition and pathways were analyzed by two web-based tools: MetaboAnalyst and Pathview. Then, long-term exposure to A. castellanii was investigated through in silico and in vitro methods to elucidate the homeostasis of amino acids and the growth of A. castellanii. Results: Under short-term exposure, all kinds of amino acids were enriched in all exposed groups. In contrast to the presence of heat-killed bacteria, the medium exhibited obvious effects on the amino acid composition of A. castellanii. After long-term exposure, the amino acid composition was more similar to that of the control group. A. castellanii may achieve amino acid homeostasis through pathways related to alanine, aspartate, citrulline, and serine. Discussion: Under short-term exposure, compared to the presence of bacteria, the type of medium exerted a more powerful effect on the amino acid composition of the amoeba. Previous studies focused on the interaction of the amoeba and bacteria with effective secretion systems and effectors. This may have caused the effects of low-nutrient environments to be overlooked. Conclusion: When A. castellanii was stimulated in the coculture system through various methods, such as the presence of bacteria and a low-nutrient environment, it accumulated intracellular amino acids within a short period. However, different stimulations correspond to different amino acid compositions. After long-term exposure, A. castellanii achieved an amino acid equilibrium by downregulating the biosynthesis of several amino acids.

Original languageEnglish
Article number198
JournalBMC microbiology
Volume23
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Dec

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)

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