Bis-(3'-5')-cyclic dimeric GMP (c-di-GMP) is an intracellular second messenger which controls the life styles of many bacteria. A high intracellular level of c-di-GMP induces a biofilm lifestyle, whereas a low intracellular level of c-di-GMP stimulates dispersal of biofilms and promotes a planktonic lifestyle. Here, we used expression of different reporters to show that planktonic cells (PCells), biofilm cells (BCells) and cells dispersed from biofilms (DCells) had distinct intracellular c-di-GMP levels. Proteomics analysis showed that the low intracellular c-di-GMP level of DCells induced the expression of proteins required for the virulence and development of antimicrobial peptide resistance in P. aeruginosa. In accordance, P. aeruginosa cells with low c-di-GMP levels were found to be more resistant to colistin than P. aeruginosa cells with high c-di-GMP levels. This contradicts the current dogma stating that dispersed cells are inevitably more susceptible to antibiotics than their sessile counterparts.
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 2013, Vol 57, Issue 5, p. 2066-2075