Inhibitors of Autoinducer-2 Quorum Sensing and Their Effect on Bacterial Biofilm Formation
Lennen, Rebecca Melissa
Bentley, William E
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Bacteria utilize small signaling molecules, or autoinducers, to regulate their gene expression in tandem by a process termed quorum sensing. The gene encoding the synthase for autoinducer-2 (AI-2), luxS, is conserved in dozens of diverse bacteria. Behaviors controlled by AI-2 include virulence, motility, toxin production, and biofilm formation. The development of therapies that interfere with AI-2 quorum sensing are attractive for targeting biofilms, which exhibit inherent resistance to most antibiotics and biocidal agents. In this study, in vitro synthesized AI-2, LuxS inhibitors, and (5Z)-4-bromo-5-(bromomethylene)-3-butyl-2(5H)-furanone were screened for their effect on biofilm formation in Escherichia coli, Bacillus cereus, and Listeria innocua. The LuxS inhibitors were found to have no influence on biofilm formation in any of the screened species, but reduced exponential phase AI-2 production in Listeria innocua. The brominated furanone significantly inhibited growth in B. cereus and L. innocua, and under certain conditions preferentially inhibited biofilm formation independently from growth.