Author(s): Vandeputte OM, Kiendrebeogo M, Rasamiravaka T, Stvigny C, Duez P,
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Abstract Preliminary screening of the Malagasy plant Combretum albiflorum for compounds attenuating the production of quorum sensing (QS)-controlled virulence factors in bacteria led to the identification of active fractions containing flavonoids. In the present study, several flavonoids belonging to the flavone, flavanone, flavonol and chalcone structural groups were screened for their capacity to reduce the production of QS-controlled factors in the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa (strain PAO1). Flavanones (i.e. naringenin, eriodictyol and taxifolin) significantly reduced the production of pyocyanin and elastase in P. aeruginosa without affecting bacterial growth. Consistently, naringenin and taxifolin reduced the expression of several QS-controlled genes (i.e. lasI, lasR, rhlI, rhlR, lasA, lasB, phzA1 and rhlA) in P. aeruginosa PAO1. Naringenin also dramatically reduced the production of the acylhomoserine lactones N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-L-homoserine lactone (3-oxo-C12-HSL) and N-butanoyl-L-homoserine lactone (C4-HSL), which is driven by the lasI and rhlI gene products, respectively. In addition, using mutant strains deficient for autoinduction (ΔlasI and ΔrhlI) and LasR- and RhlR-based biosensors, it was shown that QS inhibition by naringenin not only is the consequence of a reduced production of autoinduction compounds but also results from a defect in the proper functioning of the RlhR-C4-HSL complex. Widely distributed in the plant kingdom, flavonoids are known for their numerous and determinant roles in plant physiology, plant development and in the success of plant-rhizobia interactions, but, as shown here, some of them also have a role as inhibitors of the virulence of pathogenic bacteria by interfering with QS mechanisms.
This article was published in Microbiology
and referenced in Journal of Probiotics & Health