Response of Escherichia coli to Environmental Stress (pp. 293-330)
Authors: (Tineke H. Jones, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lacombe Research Centre, Canada)
Abstract: Escherichia coli utilizes complex networks to adapt to and survive the various stresses intended to control their growth in foods. E. coli can induce a general stress response mediated by the alternate sigma factor RpoS that provides cross protection against multiple stresses in addition to the induction of specific stress responses to cope with that specific stress. The physiological consequences of the general stress response may vary for different stress conditions because the expression of some RpoS dependent genes may also be controlled by various co-regulators that may be present or absent under different stress conditions. In addition to the general stress response, the physiological, biochemical and molecular mechanisms involved in the response of E. coli to cold, heat, osmotic, acid and oxidative stress and starvation are discussed relative to conditions encountered in the food environment. It is abundantly clear that the physiological state and prior history of cells have a great influence on the response to stress and that there is a large amount of overlap between the stress responses with multiple layers of complexity.
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