Special Issue "Genetic Networks and Gene Regulation Mechanisms for Quorum Sensing and Quorum Quenching in Bacteria"

A special issue of Genes (ISSN 2073-4425). This special issue belongs to the section "Microbial Genetics and Genomics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 January 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Manuel Espinosa Urgel

Department of Environmental Protection Estacion Experimental del Zaidin. CSIC. Profesor Albareda, 1. Granada 18008, SPAIN
Website | E-Mail
Phone: (34) 958-181600 ext. 132
Fax: (34) 958-129600
Guest Editor
Dr. Inmaculada Llamas

Department of Microbiology Facultad de Farmacia Universidad de Granada Campus Universitario de Cartuja. 18071 Granada

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Many bacterial activities, including the synthesis of secondary metabolites, enzymes and virulence factors, are modulated by quorum sensing (QS), a sophisticated cell-to-cell communication mechanism based on small diffusible molecules that alter the expression of a whole network of genes (up to 25% of the genome in some cases) when population density reaches a critical threshold. The number of chemically different molecules described as QS signals has constantly increased in the past two decades. Molecular mimics and antagonists produced by eukaryotic organisms and examples of quorum quenching activities that interfere with bacterial QS have also been identified, and may be more widespread than initially expected.

There is still much to be learned about the regulatory mechanisms in which these molecules participate and how QS enables bacteria to coordinate activities, an issue that has significant interest from the perspective of social evolution, fitness and the benefits at the population level associated with costly co-operative behaviours. Inhibiting gene expression when population density is low could serve this purpose, for example, by delaying virulence factor production until enough cells amass to produce effective levels. Restrained gene expression may also benefit groups by enabling coordinated “sneak attacks” during infection, and hiding factors that could be recognized as antigens by the immune system until a large force assembles.

In complex environments, the size of the quorum is not fixed but varies according to the relative rates of production and loss of signal molecules, which depend on many naturally fluctuating environmental parameters. Thus, quorum sensing can also be considered in the context of ‘diffusion sensing’ (DS), ‘compartment sensing’ (CS) or ‘efficiency sensing’ (ES), where the signal molecule supplies information with respect to the local environment and spatial distribution of the cells rather than, or as well as, cell population density.

This Special Issue will explore recent advances and future research avenues on quorum sensing and quorum quenching genomics and genetic networks, and molecular mechanisms of gene expression regulation mediated by signalling molecules.

Dr. Manuel Espinosa Urgel
Dr. Inmaculada Llamas
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Genes is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • cell–cell signalling
  • gene expression
  • regulatory networks
  • sociomicrobiology

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.

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