Lipopeptide Biosurfactants from Paenibacillus polymyxa Inhibit Single and Mixed Species Biofilms

Gerry A. Quinn, Aaron P. Maloy, Stephen McClean, Brian Carney, John W. Slater

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Although biofilms are recognised as important in microbial colonisation, solutions to theirinhibition are predominantly based on planktonic assays. These solutions have limited efficacy against biofilms. Here, a series of biofilm-orientated tests were used to identify antibiofilm compounds from marine micro-flora. This led to the isolation of a complex of antibiofilm compounds from a Paenibacillus polymyxa extract (PPE). A combination of rpHPLC and mass spectrometry identified the principle components of PPE as fusaricidin B (LI-FO4b) and polymyxin D1 with minor contributions from surfactins. This complex (PPE) reduced the biofilm biomass of Bacillus subtilis, Micrococcus luteus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus bovis. In contrast, ampicillin was only effective against S. aureus. PPE also inhibited a self-assembling marine biofilm (SAMB) in co-incubation assays by 99.3% ±1.9 and disrupted established SAMB by 72.4% ± 4.4, while ampicillin showed no significant reduction. The effectiveness of this complex of lipopeptides against single and multispecies biofilms suggests a future role in biofilm prevention strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1151-1166
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2012


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