Evaluation of Nisin F in the Treatment of Subcutaneous Skin Infections, as Monitored by Using a Bioluminescent Strain of Staphylococcus aureus
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The potential of nisin F as an antimicrobial agent in treating subcutaneous skin infections was tested in vivo by infecting C57BL/6 mice with a bioluminescent strain of Staphylococcus aureus (Xen 36). Strain Xen 36 has the luxABCDE operon located on a native plasmid. Mice were grouped into four groups: Infected with strain Xen 36 and treated with nisin F, infected with strain Xen 36 and treated with saline (placebo), not infected and treated with nisin (control) and not infected and not treated (control). The immune systems of the mice were suppressed with deksamethasone. Mice were treated with either nisin F or sterile physiological saline 24 and 48 h after infection with subcutaneously injected S. aureus Xen 36 (4 × 106 CFU). Histology and bioluminescent flux measurements revealed no significant difference between infected mice treated with nisin and saline, respectively. However, infected mice treated with nisin F had an increased number of polymorphonuclear cells when compared with infected mice treated with saline. Also, not infected mice treated with nisin F had an influx of polymorphonuclear cells. Nisin F is thus ineffective in combating deep dermal staphylococcal infections. The apparent immune modulation of nisin when subcutaneously injected has to be investigated.