Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) is a common superficial infection of the vaginal mucous membranes caused by the fungus Candida albicans. The aim of this study was to assess the mechanisms underlying the inhibitory effects of the culture supernatants of Lactobacillus gasseri and L. crispatus, the predominant microbiota in Asian healthy women, on C. albicans biofilm formation. The inhibition of C. albicans adhesion to HeLa cells by Lactobacillus culture supernatant was also investigated.
Candida albicans biofilm was formed on polystyrene flat-bottomed 96-well plates, and the inhibitory effects on the initial colonization and maturation phases were determined using the XTT reduction assay. The expression levels of biofilm formation-associated genes (HWP1, ECE1, ALS3, BCR1, EFG1, TEC1, and CPH1) were determined by reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction. The inhibition of C. albicans adhesion to HeLa cells by Lactobacillus culture supernatant was evaluated by enumerating viable C. albicans cells.
The culture supernatants of both Lactobacillus species inhibited the initial colonization and maturation of C. albicans biofilm. The expression levels of all biofilm formation-related genes were downregulated in the presence of Lactobacillus culture supernatant. The culture supernatant also inhibited C. albicans adhesion to HeLa cells.
The culture supernatants of L. gasseri and L. crispatus inhibited C. albicans biofilm formation by downregulating biofilm formation-related genes and C. albicans adhesion to HeLa cells. These findings support the notion that Lactobacillus metabolites may be useful alternatives to antifungal drugs for the management of VVC.
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This study was supported in part by the Research Program on Emerging and Re-emerging Infectious Diseases of the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development, and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, KAKENHI (to TS).
Conflict of interest
The authors declare no conflict of interest.
Handling Editor: Vishnu Chaturvedi.
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Matsuda, Y., Cho, O., Sugita, T. et al. Culture Supernatants of Lactobacillus gasseri and L. crispatus Inhibit Candida albicans Biofilm Formation and Adhesion to HeLa Cells. Mycopathologia 183, 691–700 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11046-018-0259-4
- Candida albicans
- HeLa cells
- Vulvovaginal candidiasis