Current Microbiology

, Volume 61, Issue 6, pp 554–559 | Cite as

Biosurfactants as Agents to Reduce Adhesion of Pathogenic Bacteria to Polystyrene Surfaces: Effect of Temperature and Hydrophobicity

  • Ana Eliza Zeraik
  • Marcia Nitschke


Polystyrene surfaces were conditioned with surfactin and rhamnolipid biosurfactants and then assessed regarding the attachment of Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, and Micrococcus luteus. The effect of different temperatures (35, 25, and 4°C) on the anti-adhesive activity was also studied. Microbial adhesion to solvents and contact angle measurements were performed to characterize bacteria and material surfaces. The results showed that surfactin was able to inhibit bacterial adhesion in all the conditions analyzed, giving a 63–66% adhesion reduction in the bacterial strains at 4°C. Rhamnolipid promoted a slight decrease in the attachment of S. aureus. The anti-adhesive activity of surfactin increased with the decrease in temperature, showing that this is an important parameter to be considered in surface conditioning tests. Surfactin showed good potential as an anti-adhesive compound that can be explored to protect surfaces from microbial contamination.


Critical Micelle Concentration Water Contact Angle Hexadecane Listeria Monocytogenes Contact Angle Measurement 
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The authors would like to thank the financial support provided by Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) and Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Chemistry Institute of São CarlosUniversity of São PauloSão CarlosBrazil

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