The specific effect of gallic acid on Escherichia coli biofilm formation by regulating pgaABCD genes expression
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Escherichia coli (E. coli) is associated with an array of health-threatening contaminations, some of which are related to biofilm states. The pgaABCD-encoded poly-beta-1,6-N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (PGA) polymer plays an important role in biofilm formation. This study was conducted to determine the inhibitory effect of gallic acid (GA) against E. coli biofilm formation. Minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimal bactericidal concentration (MBC) values of GA against planktonic E. coli were 0.5 and 4 mg/mL, and minimal biofilm inhibitory concentration and minimal biofilm eradication concentration values of GA against E. coli in biofilms were 2 and 8 mg/mL, respectively. Quantitative crystal violet staining of biofilms and ESEM images clearly indicate that GA effectively, dose-dependently inhibited biofilm formation. CFU counting and confocal laser scanning microscopy measurements showed that GA significantly reduced viable bacteria in the biofilm. The contents of polysaccharide slime, protein, and DNA in the E. coli biofilm also decreased. qRT-PCR data showed that at the sub-MIC level of GA (0.25 mg/mL) and expression of pgaABC genes was downregulated, while pgaD gene expression was upregulated. The sub-MBC level of GA (2 mg/mL) significantly suppressed the pgaABCD genes. Our results altogether demonstrate that GA inhibited viable bacteria and E. coli biofilm formation, marking a novel approach to the prevention and treatment of biofilm-related infections in the food industry.
KeywordsGallic acid Escherichia coli Biofilm pgaABCD genes Food safety
The authors acknowledge the financial support from National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant no. 31301472) and Project Funded by Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (no. 3102016QD075).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
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