, Volume 25, Issue 5, pp 743-748
Date: 16 Jun 2010

Laser light combined with a photosensitizer may eliminate methicillin-resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus

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Abstract

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a major cause of hospital acquired infection throughout the world especially in wound and burn infections, pneumonia, septicaemia and endocarditis. We describe the effect of a HeNe laser in combination with a TBO dye on the viability of MRSA. A total of 34 isolates of S. aureus were obtained from 100 patients suffering from burns or wounds and from the nasal vestibulum of medical and nonmedical staff as carriers; eight isolates were methicillin-resistant. The isolates were exposed for 5, 10 and 15 min to a HeNe laser at a wavelength of 632.8 nm and 7.5 mW output power in the presence of 50 μg/ml toluidune blue O photosensitizer. The viable count was substantially decreased as determined by the plate count method for the three exposure times, with 100% killing with the 15-min exposure time. No significant effect was observed on MRSA isolates exposed to the laser alone. So MRSA was completely eradicated following 15 min exposure to a 632.8-nm HeNe laser in the presence of 50 μg/ml toluidune blue O photosensitizer under in vitro conditions.