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Non-toxic plant metabolites regulate Staphylococcus viability and biofilm formation: a natural therapeutic strategy useful in the treatment and prevention of skin infections.

Morán A, Gutiérrez S, Martínez-Blanco H, Ferrero MA, Monteagudo-Mera A, Rodríguez-Aparicio LB.
Biofouling 30(10):1175-82.

In the present study, the efficacy of generally recognised as safe (GRAS) antimicrobial plant metabolites in regulating the growth of Staphylococcus aureus and S. epidermidis was investigated. Thymol, carvacrol and eugenol showed the
strongest antibacterial action against these microorganisms, at a subinhibitory concentration (SIC) of ≤ 50 μg ml(-1). Genistein, hydroquinone and resveratrol showed antimicrobial effects but with a wide concentration range (SIC = 50-1,000 μg ml(-1)), while catechin, gallic acid, protocatechuic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid and cranberry extract were the most biologically compatible molecules (SIC ≥ 1000 μg ml(-1)). Genistein, protocatechuic acid, cranberry extract, p-hydroxybenzoic acid and resveratrol also showed anti-biofilm activity against S. aureus, but not against S. epidermidis in which, surprisingly, these metabolites stimulated biofilm formation (between 35% and 1,200%). Binary combinations of cranberry extract and resveratrol with genistein, protocatechuic or p-hydroxibenzoic acid enhanced the stimulatory effect on S. epidermidis biofilm formation and maintained or even increased S. aureus anti-biofilm