Unraveling the predator-prey relationship of Cupriavidus necator and Bacillus subtilis.

Ivana Seccareccia, Ákos T. Kovács, Ramses Gallegos-Monterrosa, Markus Nett

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Cupriavidus necator is a non-obligate bacterial predator of Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. In this study, we set out to determine the conditions, which are necessary to observe predatory behavior of C. necator. Using Bacillus subtilis as a prey organism, we confirmed that the predatory performance of C. necator is correlated with the available copper level, and that the killing is mediated, at least in part, by secreted extracellular factors. The predatory activity depends on the nutrition status of C. necator, but does not require a quorum of predator cells. This suggests that C. necator is no group predator. Further analyses revealed that sporulation enables B. subtilis to avoid predation by C. necator. In contrast to the interaction with predatory myxobacteria, however, an intact spore coat is not required for resistance. Instead resistance is possibly mediated by quiescence.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMicrobiological Research
Pages (from-to)231-238
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Cupriavidus necator
  • Bacillus subtilis
  • Predator-prey relationship
  • Spore resistance


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