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Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1998 Apr;42(4):974-7.

Alginate lyase promotes diffusion of aminoglycosides through the extracellular polysaccharide of mucoid Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

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  • 1Division of Biomedical Sciences, University of California, Riverside 92521, USA.


We demonstrated that a 2% suspension of Pseudomonas aeruginosa alginate completely blocked the diffusion of gentamicin and tobramycin, but not that of carbenicillin, illustrating how alginate production can help protect P. aeruginosa growing within alginate microcolonies in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) from the effects of aminoglycosides. This aminoglycoside diffusion barrier was degraded with a semipurified preparation of P. aeruginosa alginate lyase, suggesting that this enzyme deserves consideration as an adjunctive agent for CF patients colonized by mucoid strains of P. aeruginosa.

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