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Microbiology. 1996 Aug;142 ( Pt 8):2271-7.

Effect of monoclonal antibodies directed against Candida albicans cell wall antigens on the adhesion of the fungus to polystyrene.

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Departamento de Inmunología, Facultad de Medicina y Odontología, Universidad del País Vasco, Vizcaya, Spain.


The adhesion of Candida albicans to polystyrene and the effect of three monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) reactive with C. albicans cell wall surface antigens on this process was assessed in vitro with several C. albicans strains. In the absence of mAbs, adhesion of C. albicans to polystyrene increased in parallel with germ-tube formation. However, the growth of the strains in the yeast phase at 25 degrees C or the use of an agerminative mutant inhibited adhesion to polystyrene. Serotype A and B strains showed similar kinetics of adhesion to polystyrene and no statistically significant differences in germination or adhesion were observed when strains from the two serotypes were compared. The three mAbs had different effects on both germination and adhesion of C. albicans. mAbs 3D9 showed no influence on either germination or adhesion to polystyrene in two C. albicans strains. mAb B9E decreased both adhesion (45.6%) and filamentation (52.6%), and mAb 21E6 decreased filamentation (34.0%) but enhanced adhesion by 23.3%. This enhancement was also observed with the agerminative mutant and it was dose-dependent. It was not related to the binding capacity of the MAb to polystyrene nor to an increase in cell surface hydrophobicity of the antibody-treated cells. In conclusion, both growth phases of C. albicans can adhere to polystyrene, although the conditions for this process seem to be different in each phase. The two types of adhesion of C. albicans to polystyrene might have a role in the colonization of medical implants. The disparate effects shown by mAbs directed against cell wall mannoproteins of C. albicans on the adhesion of the fungus to polystyrene should be taken into consideration when designing strategies to block the adhesion of C. albicans to plastic materials with mAbs.

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