Abstract: Clostridium difficile is a nosocomial pathogen that causes a serious toxin-mediated enteric disease in humans. Reducing C. difficile toxin production could significantly minimize its pathogenicity and improve disease outcomes in humans. This study investigated the efficacy of two, food-grade, plant-derived compounds, namely trans-cinnamaldehyde (TC) and carvacrol (CR) in reducing C. difficile toxin production and cytotoxicity in vitro. Three hypervirulent C. difficile isolates were grown with or without the sub-inhibitory concentrations of TC or CR, and the culture supernatant and the bacterial pellet were collected for total toxin quantitation, Vero cell cytotoxicity assay and RT-qPCR analysis of toxin-encoding genes. The effect of CR and TC on a codY mutant and wild type C. difficile was also investigated. Carvacrol and TC substantially reduced C. difficile toxin production and cytotoxicity on Vero cells. The plant compounds also significantly down-regulated toxin production genes. Carvacrol and TC did not inhibit toxin production in the codY mutant of C. difficile, suggesting a potential codY-mediated anti-toxigenic mechanism of the plant compounds. The antitoxigenic concentrations of CR and TC did not inhibit the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. Our results suggest that CR and TC could potentially be used to control C. difficile, and warrant future studies in vivo.
Keywords: plant compounds; Clostridium difficile; toxins; gene expression
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Mooyottu, S.; Kollanoor-Johny, A.; Flock, G.; Bouillaut, L.; Upadhyay, A.; Sonenshein, A.L.; Venkitanarayanan, K. Carvacrol and trans-Cinnamaldehyde Reduce Clostridium difficile Toxin Production and Cytotoxicity in Vitro. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15, 4415-4430.
Mooyottu S, Kollanoor-Johny A, Flock G, Bouillaut L, Upadhyay A, Sonenshein AL, Venkitanarayanan K. Carvacrol and trans-Cinnamaldehyde Reduce Clostridium difficile Toxin Production and Cytotoxicity in Vitro. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2014; 15(3):4415-4430.
Mooyottu, Shankumar; Kollanoor-Johny, Anup; Flock, Genevieve; Bouillaut, Laurent; Upadhyay, Abhinav; Sonenshein, Abraham L.; Venkitanarayanan, Kumar. 2014. "Carvacrol and trans-Cinnamaldehyde Reduce Clostridium difficile Toxin Production and Cytotoxicity in Vitro." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 15, no. 3: 4415-4430.