Pseudomonas aeruginosa prioritizes detoxification of hydrogen peroxide over nitric oxide.
OBJECTIVE: Bacteria are exposed to multiple concurrent antimicrobial stressors within phagosomes. Among the antimicrobials produced, hydrogen peroxide and nitric oxide are two of the most deleterious products. In a previous study, we discovered that when faced with both stressors simultaneously, Escherichia coli prioritized detoxification of hydrogen peroxide over nitric oxide. In this study, we investigated whether such a process was conserved in another bacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
RESULTS: P. aeruginosa prioritized hydrogen peroxide detoxification in a dose-dependent manner. Specifically, hydrogen peroxide detoxification was unperturbed by the presence of nitric oxide, whereas larger doses of hydrogen peroxide produced longer delays in nitric oxide detoxification. Computational modelling revealed that the rate of nitric oxide consumption in co-treated cultures was biphasic, with cells entering the second phase of detoxification only after hydrogen peroxide was eliminated from the culture.