Assessing the ratio of Bacillus spores and vegetative cells by shotgun proteomics

  • Charlotte Mappa
  • Olivier Pible
  • Jean ArmengaudEmail author
  • Béatrice Alpha-Bazin
Innovations in environmental sciences related to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear risks


Mass spectrometry for rapid identification of microorganisms is expanding over the last years because this approach is quick. This methodology provides a decisive interest to fight against bioterrorism as it is applicable whatever the pathogen to be considered and often allows subtyping which may be crucial for confirming a massive and widespread attack with biological agents. Here, we present a methodology based on next-generation proteomics and tandem mass spectrometry for discovering numerous protein biomarkers allowing the discrimination of spores and vegetative cells of Bacillus atrophaeus, a biowarfare simulant. We propose a global quantitative evaluation of the two groups of discriminant biomarkers based on their aggregated normalized spectral abundance factors.


Bacillus Detection Mass spectrometry Shotgun proteomics Spores 



We thank Jean-Charles Gaillard and Guylaine Miotello for invaluable technical help with the mass spectrometry platform.

Funding information

This work was funded in part by the French joint ministerial program of R&D against CBRNE threats and the ANR program “Phylopeptidomics” (ANR-17-CE18-0023-01). CM was supported by DGA and CEA

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratoire Innovations technologiques pour la Détection et le Diagnostic (Li2D)Service de Pharmacologie et Immunoanalyse (SPI), CEA, INRABagnols sur CèzeFrance

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