Reduction of mussel metamorphosis by inactivation of the bacterial thioesterase gene via alteration of the fatty acid composition

Xiao Meng Hu, Junbo Zhang, Wen Yang Ding, Xiao Liang, Rong Wan, Sergey Dobretsov, Jin Long Yang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The molecular mechanism underlying modulation of metamorphosis of the bivalve Mytilus coruscus by bacteria remains unclear. Here, the functional role of the thioesterase gene tesA of the bacterium Pseudoalteromonas marina in larval metamorphosis was examined. The aim was to determine whether inactivation of the tesA gene altered the biofilm-inducing capacity, bacterial cell motility, biopolymers, or the intracellular c-di-GMP levels. Complete inactivation of tesA increased the c-di-GMP content in P. marina, accompanied by a reduced fatty acid content, weaker motility, upregulation of bacterial aggregation, and biofilm formation. The metamorphosis rate of mussel larvae on ΔtesA biofilms was reduced by ∼ 80% compared with those settling on wild-type P. marina. Exogenous addition of a mixture of extracted fatty acids from P. marina into the ΔtesA biofilms promoted the biofilm-inducing capacity. This study suggests that the bacterial thioesterase gene tesA altered the fatty acid composition of ΔtesA P. marina biofilms (BF) through regulation of its c-di-GMP, subsequently impacting mussel metamorphosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)911-921
Number of pages11
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Mussel
  • bacteria
  • biofilm
  • c-di-GMP
  • fatty acid
  • metamorphosis
  • thioesterase gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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

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