Insights into piezophily from genetic studies on the deep-sea bacterium, Photobacterium profundum SS9

Ziad W El-Hajj, David Allcock, Theodora Tryfona, Federico M Lauro, Lindsay Sawyer, Douglas H Bartlett, Gail Patricia Ferguson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The deep-sea bacterium, Photobacterium profundum SS9, has been adopted as a model organism to understand the molecular basis of cold-adapted high-pressure-loving (piezophilic) growth. Despite growing optimally at 28 MPa (15 degrees C), P. profundum SS9 can grow over a wide range of pressures and temperatures. The ability to grow at atmospheric pressure has enabled a limited set of genetic tools to be developed, which has provided genetic insights into the mechanism of piezophilic growth in P. profundum SS9. This review focuses on how genetic studies have uncovered the importance of processes affecting the DNA and the bacterial cell envelope in the piezophilic growth of P. profundum SS9. In addition, a method was developed to assess quantitative piezophilic colony growth of P. profundum SS9 on solid agar. Future studies, using this methodology, could provide novel insights into the molecular basis of piezophilic, surface-attached growth.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-148
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Issue number1
Early online date1 Mar 2010
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2010


  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Cell Membrane
  • Cold Temperature
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Genes, Bacterial
  • Hydrostatic Pressure
  • Models, Biological
  • Photobacterium
  • Seawater
  • cell envelope
  • DNA replication
  • RecD
  • H-NS
  • piezophily


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