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Genetic factors affect the survival and behaviors of selected bacteria during antimicrobial blue light treatment

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posted on 2023-05-03, 18:15 authored by Joshua Hadi, Shuyan WuShuyan Wu, Aswathi Soni, Amanda Gardner, Gale BrightwellGale Brightwell
Antimicrobial resistance is a global, mounting and dynamic issue that poses an immediate threat to human, animal, and environmental health. Among the alternative antimicrobial treatments proposed to reduce the external use of antibiotics is electromagnetic radiation, such as blue light. The prevailing mechanistic model is that blue light can be absorbed by endogenous porphyrins within the bacterial cell, inducing the production of reactive oxygen species, which subsequently inflict oxidative damages upon different cellular components. Nevertheless, it is unclear whether other mechanisms are involved, particularly those that can affect the efficacy of antimicrobial blue light treatments. In this review, we summarize evidence of inherent factors that may confer protection to a selected group of bacteria against blue light-induced oxidative damages or modulate the physiological characteristics of the treated bacteria, such as virulence and motility. These include descriptions of three major photoreceptors in bacteria, chemoreceptors, SOS-dependent DNA repair and non-SOS protective mechanisms. Future directions are also provided to assist with research efforts to increase the efficacy of antimicrobial blue light and to minimize the development of blue light-tolerant phenotypes.


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© This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited


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Journal title

International Journal of Molecular Sciences




Hadi, J., Wu, S., Soni, A., Gardner, A., & Brightwell, G. (2021). Genetic factors affect the survival and behaviors of selected bacteria during antimicrobial blue light treatment. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 22(19), 10452. doi:10.3390/ijms221910452

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