To better understand how alcohol consumption negatively impacts our defenses against pathogens, I investigated how Listeria monocytogenes, a foodborne pathogen that can cause serious infections, responds to ethanol exposure. More specifically, I investigated the contribution of the electron transport chain (ETC), which involves different proteins to carry out respiration, in L. monocytogenes survival in ethanol. Survival assays were performed under different physiologically relevant conditions for wildtype bacteria and mutants deficient in ETC components. I found that ETC mutants, compared to wildtype bacteria, exhibited significantly altered ethanol survival in a manner sensitive to oxygen levels. This suggests that ETC plays a role in Listeria survival in response to ethanol exposure.
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Fawcett, Amanda, "Investigating the Role of the ETC in Listeria monocytogenes during Ethanol Exposure" (2020). Honors Theses. 257.