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Molecules 2008, 13(12), 3069-3076; doi:10.3390/molecules13123069

Effects of Two Terpene Alcohols on the Antibacterial Activity and the Mode of Action of Farnesol against Staphylococcus aureus

1
Laboratory of Bio-Medicinal Pharmacology, Showa Pharmaceutical University, Machida, 194-8543 Tokyo, Japan
2
Department of Microbiology, Showa Pharmaceutical University, Machida, 194-8543 Tokyo, Japan
3
Laboratory of Kampo Medicine and Pharmacognosy, Showa Pharmaceutical University, Machida, 194-8543 Tokyo, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 October 2008 / Revised: 20 November 2008 / Accepted: 3 December 2008 / Published: 9 December 2008
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Abstract

We have studied changes in the antibacterial activity and the mode of action of farnesol against Staphylococcus aureus when two terpene alcohols with an aliphatic carbon chain were added, individually, to a bacterial suspension that contained farnesol. Geraniol increased the growth-inhibitory activity of farnesol, but suppressed its ability to damage cell membranes, which is one of the predominant features of the growth-inhibitory activity of farnesol. Geranylgeraniol decreased the growth-inhibitory activity of farnesol and also suppressed its cell-damaging activity. It is possible that the presence of a terpene alcohol can both enhance and suppress the antibacterial activity of farnesol, and even change its mode of action. Thus, it is important to study not only the antibacterial activity of each constituent of an essential oil but also the interactions between them in efforts to characterize the antibacterial activity of the essential oil. View Full-Text
Keywords: Terpene alcohol; Antibacterial activity; Staphylococcus aureus; Cell membrane Terpene alcohol; Antibacterial activity; Staphylococcus aureus; Cell membrane
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Togashi, N.; Inoue, Y.; Hamashima, H.; Takano, A. Effects of Two Terpene Alcohols on the Antibacterial Activity and the Mode of Action of Farnesol against Staphylococcus aureus. Molecules 2008, 13, 3069-3076.

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