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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1998 Mar 1;160(1):25-30.

Osmoprotective properties and accumulation of betaine analogues by Staphylococcus aureus.

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Department of Nephrology, Christchurch Hospital, New Zealand.


Betaines were evaluated as potential antistaphylococcal agents for urinary tract infections. Staphylococcus aureus accumulated all tested betaines except trigonelline. S. aureus transport systems were less sensitive to carbon chain length than those of Escherichia coli. Betaines were accumulated in the absence of osmotic stress, and 10-fold more in hyperosmotic medium. Most betaines increased the osmotolerance of S. aureus in defined minimal medium. Unlike E. coli, S. aureus did not significantly accumulate a second betaine in the presence of glycine betaine. Betaines are less likely to be useful in treating staphylococcal than E. coli urinary infections.

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