The effect of generally recognised as safe (GRAS) plant metabolites in regulating the growth of human pathogenic and probiotic bacteria and in the formation of biofilm was investigated. Thymol, carvacrol and eugenol showed the strongest antibacterial action against both pathogenic and probiotic microorganisms, at a subinhibitory concentration (SIC) of ≤50 μg ml−1. Genistein, hydroquinone, p-hydroxybenzoic acid and resveratrol also showed antibacterial effects but at a wide concentration range (SIC = 50–1000 μg ml−1). Catechin, gallic acid, protocatechuic acid and cranberry extracts were the most biologically compatible molecules (SIC ≥ 1000 μg ml−1). Regarding the effect on biofilm, it was observed that thymol, carvacrol and eugenol showed antibiofilm activity against all potential pathogenic bacteria tested whilst specifically enhancing probiotic aggregation. Catechin, genistein and cranberry extracts did not inhibit the pathogenic aggregation but they stimulated probiotic biofilm formation, whilst gallic acid, protocateuchic acid, hydroquinone, p-hydroxybenzoic acid and resveratrol did not show opposite effect on biofilm formation between pathogenic and probiotic microorganisms. These results indicate that an appropriate combination of GRAS plant metabolites, which have traditionally been used as dietary constituents due to their health-promoting characteristics, can also be extremely useful in the regulation of bacterial proliferation in the intestinal microbiota. Hence, it is suggested to apply these natural GRAS molecules as dietary supplements in the food industry in order to promote probiotic viability and to prevent or reduce colonisation or proliferation of intestinal pathogens.
Probiotics and Antimicrobial Proteins – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 29, 2017
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