Evaluation of combinations of putative anti-biofilm agents and antibiotics to eradicate biofilms ofStaphylococcus aureusandPseudomonas aeruginosa

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To evaluate potential anti-biofilm agents for their ability to enhance the activity of antibiotics for local treatment of localized biofilm infections.


Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa in vitro biofilm models were developed. The putative antibiotic enhancers N-acetylcysteine, acetylsalicylic acid, sodium salicylate, recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I, dispersin B, hydrogen peroxide and Johnson's Baby Shampoo (JBS) were tested for their anti-biofilm activity alone and their ability to enhance the activity of antibiotics for 7 or 14 days, against 5 day old biofilms. The antibiotic enhancers were paired with rifampicin and clindamycin against S. aureus and gentamicin and ciprofloxacin against P. aeruginosa. Isolates from biofilms that were not eradicated were tested for antibiotic resistance.


Antibiotic levels 10×MIC and 100×MIC significantly reduced biofilm, but did not consistently eradicate it. Antibiotics at 100×MIC with 10% JBS for 14 days was the only treatment to eradicate both staphylococcal and pseudomonal biofilms. Recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I significantly reduced staphylococcal biofilm. Emergence of resistance of surviving isolates was minimal and was often associated with the small colony variant phenotype.


JBS enhanced the activity of antibiotics and several other promising anti-biofilm agents were identified. Antibiotics with 10% JBS eradicated biofilms produced by both organisms. Such combinations might be useful in local treatment of localized biofilm infections.

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