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Opportunistic pathogenic bacteria and their pathogenicity linked with biofilm infections become a severe issue as they resist the actions of multiple antimicrobial drugs. Naturally derived drugs having antibiofilm properties are more effective than chemically synthesized drugs. The plant derived essential oils are a rich source of phytoconstituents with widespread pharmacological values. In the present investigation, a major phytoconstituent, 2-Phenyl Ethyl Methyl Ether (PEME) of Kewda essential oil extracted from the flowers of Pandanus odorifer was explored for its prospective antimicrobial and anti-biofilm properties against ESKAPE pathogenic bacterial strains, Staphylococcus aureus and MTCC 740. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of PEME was found to be 50 mM against the tested bacterial strains. A gradual decrease in biofilm production was observed when PEME was treated with the sub-MIC concentration. The reduction in biofilm formation was noticeable from qualitative assay i.e., Congo Red Agar Assay (CRA) and further quantified by crystal violet staining assay. The decline in exopolysaccharides production was quantified, with the highest inhibition against MTCC 740 with a decrease of 71.76 ± 4.56% compared to untreated control. From the microscopic analysis (light and fluorescence microscopic method), PEME exhibited inhibitory effect on biofilm formation on the polystyrene surface. The in silico studies stated that PEME could invariably bind to biofilm associated target proteins. Further, transcriptomic data analysis suggested the role of PEME in the down-regulation of specific genes, agrA, sarA, norA and mepR, which are critically associated with bacterial virulence, biofilm dynamics and drug resistance patterns in S. aureus. Further, qRT-PCR analysis validated the role of PEME on biofilm inhibition by relative downregulation of agrA, sarA, norA and mepR genes. Further, advanced in silico methodologies could be employed in future investigations to validate its candidature as promising anti-biofilm agent. Copyright © 2023 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Priya Cheruvanachari, Subhaswaraj Pattnaik, Monika Mishra, Pratyush Pragyandipta, Animesh Pattnaik, Pradeep Kumar Naik. Deciphering the antibiofilm potential of 2-Phenylethyl methyl ether (PEME), a bioactive compound of Kewda essential oil against Staphylococcus aureus. Microbial pathogenesis. 2023 Jun;179:106093

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PMID: 37004966

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