Nanomaterials as a Novel Class of Anti-infective Agents that Attenuate Bacterial Quorum Sensing

  • Fohad Mabood HusainEmail author
  • Mohammad Shavez Khan
  • Iqbal Ahmad
  • Rais Ahmad Khan
  • Nasser A. Al-Shabib
  • Mohammad Oves
  • Rodolfo García Contreras
  • Mohd Shahnawaz Khan
  • Mohammed Arshad
  • Abdullah A. Alyousef


Excessive and unabated use of antibiotics has led to the emergence of multi-drug resistant (MDR) bacteria. The ineffectiveness of current antibiotic therapy and the slow development of new drugs with novel modes of action have made the task of combating MDR infections even more difficult. The problem of multi-drug resistance among pathogens has prompted the scientific community to look for alternative strategies. One such approach, termed antipathogenic/antivirulence therapy, is considered to be a viable alternative. This strategy is focused on rendering the pathogen ineffective by inhibiting its virulence traits rather than killing it. Since antipathogenic/antivirulence compounds target bacterial virulence, the likelihood of developing resistance is also reduced considerably. The areas of major interest in the antivirulence approach include the inhibition of quorum sensing and biofilm formation. The pioneering discovery of halogenated furanones as quorum sensing inhibitors (QSIs) has prompted the scientific community to search for novel QSIs of both natural and synthetic origin. However, QSIs like furanones are not recommended for human use due to issues related to their toxicity and stability. Recently, researchers across the globe have turned their attention toward nanomaterials as potential anti-infective drugs, targeting QS and biofilm formation. Although there are numerous studies regarding the antibacterial effect of nanoparticles, current reports on the antiquorum sensing and biofilm inhibition properties are still scarce. Therefore, in this article we have made an honest attempt to summarize the reports on the anti-QS properties of nanoparticles and their future as novel anti-infective drugs.


Anti-infective Quorum sensing Biofilm Nanoparticles Nanocarriers Nano-QSIs 



The authors acknowledge the Deanship of Scientific Research and Research Centre, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh, KSA for funding this research.


The authors report no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fohad Mabood Husain
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mohammad Shavez Khan
    • 2
  • Iqbal Ahmad
    • 2
  • Rais Ahmad Khan
    • 3
  • Nasser A. Al-Shabib
    • 1
  • Mohammad Oves
    • 4
  • Rodolfo García Contreras
    • 5
  • Mohd Shahnawaz Khan
    • 6
  • Mohammed Arshad
    • 7
  • Abdullah A. Alyousef
    • 7
  1. 1.Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Food and AgricultureKing Saud UniversityRiyadhKingdom of Saudi Arabia
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural Microbiology, Faculty of Agricultural SciencesAligarh Muslim UniversityAligarhIndia
  3. 3.Department of Chemistry, College of ScienceKing Saud UniversityRiyadhKingdom of Saudi Arabia
  4. 4.Center of Excellence in Environmental StudiesKing Abdulaziz UniversityJeddahKingdom of Saudi Arabia
  5. 5.Department of Microbiology and Parasitology, Faculty of MedicineNational Autonomous University of Mexico, Avenida Universidad 3000Mexico CityMexico
  6. 6.Protein Research Chair, Department of Biochemistry, College of ScienceKing Saud UniversityRiyadhKingdom of Saudi Arabia
  7. 7.Department of Clinical Laboratory Science, College of Applied Medical SciencesKing Saud UniversityRiyadhKingdom of Saudi Arabia

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