A mother cell-to-forespore channel: Current understanding and future challenges

Adam D. Crawshaw, Monica Paula Miranda, Will A. Stanley, Adriano Jose Henriques, Paula S. Salgado

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Formation of endospores allows some bacteria to survive extreme nutrient limitation. The resulting dormant cell, the spore, persists in the environment and is highly resistant to physical and chemical stresses. During spore formation, cells divide asymmetrically and the mother cell engulfs the developing spore, encasing it within a double membrane and isolating it from the medium. Communication between mother cell and isolated forespore involves a specialised connection system that allows nurturing of the forespore and continued macromolecular synthesis, required to finalise spore maturation. Here, we review current understanding of this feeding channel formed by a forespore protein, SpoIIQ, and a mother cell protein, SpoIIIAH, in the model organism Bacillus subtilis and the important human pathogen Clostridium difficile. We also analyse the presence of this channel across endospore-forming bacteria and highlight the main questions still remaining. We review the current understanding of a channel that allows communication between forespore and mother cell and highlight the main questions still to be investigated. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-136
Number of pages8
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2014


  • spoIIIA
  • spoIIQ
  • Cell-cell communication
  • Clostridium difficile
  • Sigma factor
  • Sporulation


Dive into the research topics of 'A mother cell-to-forespore channel: Current understanding and future challenges'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this