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Res Microbiol. 2010 May;161(4):293-304. doi: 10.1016/j.resmic.2010.03.002. Epub 2010 Apr 8.

Bacillus pumilus of Palk Bay origin inhibits quorum-sensing-mediated virulence factors in Gram-negative bacteria.

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  • 1Department of Biotechnology, Alagappa University, Karaikudi 630 003, Tamil Nadu, India.


The aim of the current study was to inhibit quoring-sensing(QS)-mediated virulence factors of representative Gram-negative bacteria by marine bacterial isolates. Bacteria isolated from Palk Bay sediments were screened for anti-QS activity. Eleven strains inhibited QS signals in Chromobacterium violaceum (ATCC 12472) and C. violaceum CV026. The marine bacterial strain S8-07 reduced the accumulation of N-acyl homoserine lactone (AHLs) and showed significant inhibition of LasA protease(76%), LasB elastase(84%), caseinase(70%), pyocyanin (84%), pyoverdin and biofilm formation(87%) in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1. Strain S8-07 also showed highly significant reduction (90%) in prodigiosin, secreted casienase (92%), hemolytic activity (73%) and biofilm formation (61%) in Serratia marcescens. Strain S8-07, identified as Bacillus pumilus (accession number FJ584416), showed distinct profiles of inhibition against the virulence factors of both P. aeruginosa PAO1 (las, rhl) and S. marcescens (shl). Polar extraction and proteinase K treatment of the culture supernatant confirmed that the anti-QS activity of S8-07 was indeed due to a protein molecule. Acidification assay and HPLC analysis revealed that the degradation of AHL was not due to lactonase activity, but rather, was due to acylase activity of S8-07. Thus, novel anti-QS acylase activity is reported for the first time from a B. pumilus strain of marine origin.

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