Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus attacks Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans

Journal of Dental Research
Mark Van EsscheWim Teughels


Periodontitis is a polymicrobial infectious disease primarily associated with Gram-negative periodontopathogens. Bdellovibrio and like organisms are predatory bacteria that feed on Gram-negative bacteria. This study investigated whether predatory bacteria can attack Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans. Therefore, A. actinomycetemcomitans was challenged with the predator Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus under conditions simulating the oral cavity. The reduction of planktonic A. actinomycetemcomitans was quantified via bacterial culture, and the development of predatory bacteria was monitored with quantitative real-time PCR. The destruction of A. actinomycetemcomitans biofilms by B. bacteriovorus was quantified by crystal violet staining and visualized by scanning electron microscopy. The in vitro results show that B. bacteriovorus can attack, prey on, and kill A. actinomycetemcomitans and suggest a potential for B. bacteriovorus as a living antibiotic for the prevention and treatment of periodontitis.


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Methods Mentioned

scanning electron microscopy

Related Concepts

Interference, Bacterial
Streak Plate Count
Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans
Microbial Biofilms
Gram-Negative Bacteria
Scanning Electron Microscopy

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