Bacteria, primitive single-celled organisms, communicate with chemical languages that allow them to synchronize their behavior and thereby act as enormous multi-cellular organisms. This process is called quorum sensing and it enables bacteria to successfully infect and cause disease in plants, animals, and humans. Investigations of the molecular mechanisms underlying quorum sensing are leading to the development of novel strategies to interfere with quorum sensing. These strategies form the basis of new therapies to be used as antibiotics.
Bonnie Bassler is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and the Squibb Professor of Molecular Biology at Princeton University. Bassler received a B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of California at Davis, and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry… Continue Reading