Ecological effects of stress drive bacterial evolvability under sub-inhibitory antibiotic treatments [article]

Marie Vasse, Sebastian Bonhoeffer, Antoine Frenoy
2020 bioRxiv   pre-print
Stress is thought to increase mutation rate and thus to accelerate evolution. In the context of antibiotic resistance, sub-inhibitory treatments could then lead to enhanced evolvability, thereby fueling the adaptation of pathogens. Conducting a meta-analysis of published experimental data as well as our own experiments, we found that the increase in mutation rates triggered by antibiotic treatments is often canceled out by reduced population size, resulting in no overall increase in genetic
more » ... ease in genetic diversity. A careful analysis of the effect of ecological factors on genetic diversity revealed that the potential for regrowth during recovery phase after treatment plays a crucial role in evolvability and is the main predictor of increased genetic diversity in experimental data.
doi:10.1101/2020.06.30.181099 fatcat:bj2bmujyxbbw3mftc52f5mie6u