A Revised Understanding of Clostridioides difficile Spore Germination

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


The dormant resistant spores of Clostridioides difficile are transformed into
metabolically active cells through the process of germination. Spore germination
in C. difficile is regulated by the detection of bile salt germinants and amino acid
cogerminants by pseudoproteases CspC and CspA, respectively. The germinant
signal is transduced to the serine protease CspB, which processes the cortex
lytic enzyme SleC, leading to degradation of the spore cortex peptidoglycan
and subsequent reactivation of the spore. Divergent C. difficile germination
models have been proposed to explain interactions between key regulators
and transduction of germinant and cogerminant signals. This review summarises
advances in understanding C. difficile germination and outlines current models
of germination regulation.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalTrends in Microbiology
Early online date23 Apr 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Apr 2020


Bibliographical note

© 2020 The Authors. Creative Commons Attribution – NonCommercial – NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)


  • C. difficile
  • cogerminant
  • germinant
  • germination
  • inhibitor

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