Archaeal cells share common size control with bacteria despite noisier growth and division.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

In nature, microorganisms exhibit different volumes spanning six orders of magnitude 1 . Despite their capability to create different sizes, a clonal population in a given environment maintains a uniform size across individual cells. Recent studies in eukaryotic and bacterial organisms showed that this homogeneity in cell size can be accomplished by growing a constant size between two cell cycle events (that is, the adder model 2-6 ). Demonstration of the adder model led to the hypothesis that this phenomenon is a consequence of convergent evolution. Given that archaeal cells share characteristics with both bacteria and eukaryotes, we investigated whether and how archaeal cells exhibit control over cell size. To this end, we developed a soft-lithography method of growing the archaeal cells to enable quantitative time-lapse imaging and single-cell analysis, which would be useful for other microorganisms. Using this method, we demonstrated that Halobacterium salinarum, a hypersaline-adapted archaeal organism, grows exponentially at the single-cell level and maintains a narrow-size distribution by adding a constant length between cell division events. Interestingly, the archaeal cells exhibited greater variability in cell division placement and exponential growth rate across individual cells in a population relative to those observed in Escherichia coli 6-9 . Here, we present a theoretical framework that explains how these larger fluctuations in archaeal cell cycle events contribute to cell size variability and control.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Eun, Y-J; Ho, P-Y; Kim, M; LaRussa, S; Robert, L; Renner, LD; Schmid, A; Garner, E; Amir, A

Published Date

  • February 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 3 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 148 - 154

PubMed ID

  • 29255255

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2058-5276

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2058-5276

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/s41564-017-0082-6


  • eng