Author(s): Knapp HR, Melly MA
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Abstract Bactericidal effects of polyunsaturated fatty acids were investigated by using an in vitro killing assay. All gram-positive species tested were extremely susceptible to 10(-5) M arachidonic acid as were Neisseria, Branhamella, and Haemophilus spp. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and and members of the Enterobacteriaceae were resistant. The toxicity of polyunsaturated fatty acids for Staphylococcus aureus was dependent upon time, concentration, and fatty acid unsaturation. Arachidonic acid underwent peroxidation when incubated with S. aureus, but arachidonic acid peroxidation products had low bactericidal activity. Catalase protected S. aureus, whereas superoxide dismutase was ineffective. Scavengers of hydroxyl radicals or singlet oxygen or removal of halide ions had little effect on arachidonic acid-induced killing of bacteria, whereas transition metal chelators and some thiols were highly protective. S. aureus grown in iron-supplemented broth had increased iron content and arachidonic acid susceptibility. Ascorbate also potentiated arachidonic acid-induced killing of S. aureus. These observations indicate that bactericidal effects of polyunsaturated fatty acids are mediated by a peroxidative process involving H2O2 and bacterial iron.
This article was published in J Infect Dis
and referenced in Journal of Veterinary Science & Technology