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Curr Microbiol. 2010 Nov;61(5):417-21. doi: 10.1007/s00284-010-9630-5. Epub 2010 Apr 2.

Inhibitory activity by barley coffee components towards Streptococcus mutans biofilm.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy.


It was shown that barley coffee (BC) interferes with Streptococcus mutans adsorption to hydroxyapatite. After BC component fractionation by dialysis and gel filtration chromatography (GFC), it was found that the low molecular mass (<1,000 Da) fraction (LMM fraction) containing polyphenols, zinc and fluoride ions and, above all, a high molecular mass (HMM > 1,000 kDa) melanoidin fraction display strong anti-adhesive properties towards S. mutans. In this study, we have further examined the potential of BC, BC LMM fraction and BC HMM melanoidin fraction as caries controlling agents by evaluating their anti-biofilm activity.The effects of BC and BC fractions on biofilm formation by S. mutans ATCC 25175 and its detachment from pre-developed biofilms were evaluated by microtiter plate assay. It was found that BC and its fractions, at concentrations ranging from 60 to 15 mg ml(-1) that are devoid of antimicrobial activity, inhibited S. mutans biofilm formation. An increase of S. mutans ATCC 25175 detachment from 24 h developed biofilm was observed at the highest tested concentrations. Interestingly, BC and BC fractions also showed anti-biofilm activity towards a variety of S. mutans clinical strains isolated from saliva, plaque and caries lesions of adult donors. In general, the HMM melanoidin fraction was more active than the LMM fraction. These findings, classifying BC LMM fraction and BC HMM melanoidin fractions as natural anti-biofilm agents, represent the basis for studying their possible use as anti-caries agents.

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