Bacterial flagella: a self-assembled nano-filaments
陳美廷1*, 羅健榮1
* presenting author:陳美廷,
Bacterial flagella are self-assembled external helical filaments. They are tubular pipes acting as propellers for bacteria to be motile. Flagellins, flagellum monomers (FliC), are pumped out from the basal body associated with six integral membrane proteins (FlhA, FlhB, FliO, FliP, FliQ and FliR) and three soluble proteins (FliH, FliI, and FliJ) through the nanometer transportation system. As FliC reaches the end of flagellar filament, it becomes the new extending part of the filament and contributes 5 Å to the flagellar length. In order to study this nanometer size self-assembled system, we have developed a fast flagella protein binding assay to directly monitor the length of the polar flagella of Vibrio alginolyticus. It enables us to track a single flagellum length within few minutes. Using laser scanning confocal microscope and temperature control system, we are able to observe short flagella and to measure the growth rate at specific temperatures. We found that the filament growth rate decrease exponentially with filament length at all measured temperatures. We also found that in both functional and non-functional motors, the growth rates are similar. We will also present the model in this talk.

Keywords: flagella, Vibrio alginolyticus, nanoorange