The Bacteroides fragilis
ATCC strain was grown in a synthetic media with contrasting redox potential (Eh
) levels [reduced (-60 mV) or oxidised (+100mV)] and their adhesion capacity to extracellular matrix components was evaluated. The strain was capable of adhering to laminin, fibronectin, fibronectin + heparan sulphate and heparan sulphate. A stronger adherence to laminin after growing the strain under oxidising conditions was verified. Electron microscopy using ruthenium red showed a heterogeneous population under this condition. Dot-blotting analyses confirmed stronger laminin recognition by outer membrane proteins of cells cultured at a higher Eh. Using a laminin affinity column, several putative laminin binding proteins obtained from the cultures kept under oxidising (60 kDa, 36 kDa, 25 kDa and 15 kDa) and reducing (60 kDa) conditions could be detected. Our results show that the expression of B. fragilis
surface components that recognise laminin are influenced by Eh variations.