Quorum sensing and biofilm formation in Streptococcal infections

J Clin Invest. 2003 Dec;112(11):1626-32. doi: 10.1172/JCI20430.


Members of the bacterial genus Streptococcus are responsible for causing a wide variety of infections in humans. Many Streptococci use quorum-sensing systems to regulate several physiological properties, including the ability to incorporate foreign DNA, tolerate acid, form biofilms, and become virulent. These quorum-sensing systems are primarily made of small soluble signal peptides that are detected by neighboring cells via a histidine kinase/response regulator pair.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Proteins / physiology
  • Bacteriocins / pharmacology
  • Biofilms*
  • Dental Plaque / microbiology
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Signal Transduction
  • Streptococcal Infections / etiology*
  • Streptococcus / pathogenicity*
  • Streptococcus / physiology


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Bacteriocins
  • competence factor, Streptococcus