Type VI Secretion System: A syringe for survival
Bacterial Type VI Secretion Systems (T6SS) have a bacteriophage needle – like structure used to puncture target
cells and deliver effectors subverting the outer membranous layer of the target cells. Within ten years since its discovery, the
T6SS apparatus has been duly researched and documented. Its core components and effectors have been identified and
ascribed specific functions. Utility of the T6SS in pathogenicity and inter-bacterial interactions have been studied great detail.
This review covers the milestone discovery of the T6SS apparatus, an overview of its gene locus, proposed structure and core
components. We also delve into the utility of T6SS apparatus in bacterial pathogenicity, sustenance, inter-bacterial
interactions, communal behavior and bacterial fitness.
Index Terms - Bacterial secretion system, bacterial fitness, contact dependent, Hcp, phage-like machinery, VgrG.