Physiological analysis of bacterial mechanosensitive channels

Ian R. Booth, Michelle D. Edwards, Susan Shirley Black, Ulrike Schumann, Wendy Bartlett, Tim Rasmussen, Akiko Rasmussen, Samantha Miller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

21 Citations (Scopus)


Bacterial mechanosensitive (MS) channels play a significant role in protecting cells against hypoosmotic shock. Bacteria that have been diluted from high osmolarity medium into dilute solution are required to cope with sudden water influx associated with an osmotic imbalance equivalent to 10 to 14 atm. The cell wall is only poorly expansive and the cytoplasmic membrane even less so. Thus, swelling is not an option and the cell must rapidly eject solutes to diminish the osmotic gradient and thereby preserve structural integrity. This chapter describes cellular assays of MS channel function and their interpretation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMethods in Enzymology
Subtitle of host publicationOsmosensing and Osmosignaling
EditorsDieter Häussinger, Helmut Sies
PublisherAcademic Press
Number of pages15
ISBN (Print)978-0-12-373921-6
Publication statusPublished - 2007

Publication series

NameMethods in Enzymology


  • escherichia-coli MSCS
  • large-conductance
  • compatible solutes
  • osmotic-stress
  • activation
  • protein
  • osmoregulation
  • identification
  • mutations
  • stability


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