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A MATHEMATICAL MODEL TO STUDY THE ROLE OF THE LSR INTERGENIC REGION IN MEDIATION OF AUTOINDUCER-2 QUORUM SENSING IN ESCHERICHIA COLI
Graff, Steven Meyer
Bentley, William E.
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Quorum sensing (QS) is a process that allows bacteria to communicate with each other to coordinate collective behavior in response to changes in environmental conditions. Their ability to mediate biofilm formation of biofilms and antibiotic resistance has created challenges on healthcare systems, and an impetus for us to understand QS systems. QS mediated by autoinducer-2 is likely to be the most common of these mechanisms. Recent work has elaborated on the LuxS-regulated (Lsr) system which can mediate and process AI-2 to QS-dependent behaviors, particularly regulatory elements including the lsr intergenic region and the repressor LsrR, the so-called QS"switch". In this thesis, we present a simulation of an example lsr-QS-system to elucidate the role of the lsr intergenic region binding site interactions and how this model integrates with recent literature on LsrR's protein structure to provide further details on the mechanisms of how the switch may operate in real systems.