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Molecules 2011, 16(9), 7958-7968; doi:10.3390/molecules16097958
Article

Allicin Reduces the Production of α-Toxin by Staphylococcus aureus

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1 Key Laboratory of Zoonosis, Ministry of Education, Institute of Zoonosis, College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Jilin University, Changchun 130062, China 2 College of Quartermaster Technology, Jilin University, Changchun 130062, China These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 July 2011 / Revised: 1 September 2011 / Accepted: 7 September 2011 / Published: 15 September 2011
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Abstract

Staphylococcus aureus causes a broad range of life-threatening diseases in humans. The pathogenicity of this micro-organism is largely dependent upon its virulence factors. One of the most extensively studied virulence factors is the extracellular protein α-toxin. In this study, we show that allicin, an organosulfur compound, was active against S. aureus with MICs ranged from 32 to 64 μg/mL. Haemolysis, Western blot and real-time RT-PCR assays were used to evaluate the effects of allicin on S. aureus α-toxin production and on the levels of gene expression, respectively. The results of our study indicated that sub-inhibitory concentrations of allicin decreased the production of α-toxin in both methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) and methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the transcriptional levels of agr (accessory gene regulator) in S. aureus were inhibited by allicin. Therefore, allicin may be useful in the treatment of α-toxin-producing S. aureus infections.
Keywords: Staphylococcus aureus; α-toxin; allicin; sub-inhibitory concentrations Staphylococcus aureus; α-toxin; allicin; sub-inhibitory concentrations
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Leng, B.-F.; Qiu, J.-Z.; Dai, X.-H.; Dong, J.; Wang, J.-F.; Luo, M.-J.; Li, H.-E.; Niu, X.-D.; Zhang, Y.; Ai, Y.-X.; Deng, X.-M. Allicin Reduces the Production of α-Toxin by Staphylococcus aureus. Molecules 2011, 16, 7958-7968.

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