Mini-review: Quorum sensing in the marine environment and its relationship to biofouling

Sergey Dobretsov*, Max Teplitski, Valerie Paul

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

287 Citations (SciVal)


Bacterial quorum sensing (QS) is a cell-cell communication and gene regulatory mechanism that allows bacteria to coordinate swarming, biofilm formation, stress resistance, and production of toxins and secondary metabolites in response to threshold concentrations of QS signals that accumulate within a diffusion-limited environment. This review focuses on the role of QS signaling and QS inhibition in marine bacteria by compounds derived from marine organisms. Since the formation of a biofilm is considered to be an initial step in the development of fouling, direct and indirect effects of QS signals and inhibitors on the process of marine biofouling are discussed. Directions for future investigations and QS-related biotechnological applications are highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-427
Number of pages15
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009


  • Biofilm formation
  • Biofouling
  • Gram-negative bacteria
  • Inhibitors
  • Marine environment
  • Quorum sensing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Water Science and Technology


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