Current Microbiology

, Volume 62, Issue 1, pp 84–89 | Cite as

ATP Modulates the Growth of Specific Microbial Strains

  • Ming Li
  • Sung-Kwon Lee
  • Seung Hwan Yang
  • Jung Hwan Ko
  • Jeong Sun Han
  • Tae-Jong KimEmail author
  • Joo-Won SuhEmail author


The regulatory function of extracellular ATP (exATP) in bacteria is unknown, but recent studies have demonstrated exATP induced enhanced secondary metabolite production and morphological differentiation in Streptomyces coelicolor. The growth of Streptomyces coelicolor, however, was unaffected by exATP, although changes in growth are common phenotypes. To identify bacteria whose growth is altered by exATP, we measured exATP-induced population changes in fast-growing microbes and actinomycetes in compost. Compared with the water-treated control, the addition of 10 ml 100 μM ATP to 10 g of compost enhanced the actinomycetes population by 30% and decreased fast-growing microbial numbers by 20%. Eight microbes from each group were selected from the most populated colony, based on appearance. Of the eight isolated fast-growing microbes, the 16S rRNA sequences of three isolates were similar to the plant pathogens Serratia proteamaculans and Sphingomonas melonis, and one was close to a human pathogen, Elizabethkingia meningoseptica. The growth of all fast-growing microbes was inhibited by ATP, which was confirmed in Pseudomonas syringae DC3000, a pathogenic plant bacterium. The growth of six of eight isolated actinomycetes strains, all of which were identified as close to Streptomyces neyagawaensis, was enhanced by ATP treatment. This study suggests that exATP regulates bacterial physiology and that the exATP response system is a target for the control of bacterial ecology.


Streptomyces Secondary Metabolite Production Bacterial Physiology Populated Colony Bacterial Ecology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was supported by a grant (11-2008-16-001-00) from the 21C Frontier Microbial Genomics and Application Center program, the Korean Ministry of Science and Technology and by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant, funded by the Korea government (MEST) (#359-208-1-F00002). Sung-Kwon Lee supported by the second stage of BK21 (Brain Korea 21) Project.

Supplementary material

284_2010_9677_MOESM1_ESM.ppt (104 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PPT 104 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ming Li
    • 1
    • 3
  • Sung-Kwon Lee
    • 1
  • Seung Hwan Yang
    • 1
  • Jung Hwan Ko
    • 1
  • Jeong Sun Han
    • 1
  • Tae-Jong Kim
    • 2
    Email author
  • Joo-Won Suh
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Bioscience and BioinformaticsCollege of Natural Science, Myongji UniversityYonginSouth Korea
  2. 2.Department of Forest Products and BiotechnologyCollege of Forest Science, Kookmin UniversitySeoulSouth Korea
  3. 3.Center of Molecular PharmaceuticsSchool of Chemical Engineering Dalian University of TechnologyDalianPeople’s Republic of China

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