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Quaternary Ammoniumyl Chitosan Derivatives for Eradication of Staphylococcus aureus Biofilms

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journal contribution
posted on 25.07.2018 by Priyanka Sahariah, Már Másson, Rikke Louise Meyer
Bacterial biofilms tolerate extreme levels of antibiotics. Treatment of biofilm infections therefore requires the development of new or modified antimicrobials that can penetrate biofilms and are effective against dormant persistent cells. One such new approach uses the biodegradable biopolymer chitosan and its derivatives as antimicrobials. In this study, we performed synthetic modification of chitosan to selectively introduce different cationic and hydrophobic moieties at varying ratios on chitosan. This improved its aqueous solubility and antimicrobial activity toward bacterial biofilms. Initial evaluation of the chitosan derivatives showed increased activity toward planktonic Staphylococcus aureus. The effect of the quaternary ammoniumyl chitosan derivatives against Staphylococcus aureus biofilms was more variable. The most effective derivatives contained hydrophobic groups, and their efficacy against biofilms depended on the ratio and length of the alkyl chains. Three-dimensional imaging of biofilms confirmed the accessibility and antimicrobial effect of chitosan derivatives with alkyl chains in the full depth of the biofilms.