Biogenic tellurium nanorods as a novel antivirulence agent inhibiting pyoverdine production in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Authors

  • Anee Mohanty,

    1. School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    2. Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Mustafa Hussain Kathawala,

    1. School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Jianhua Zhang,

    1. School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Wei Ning Chen,

    1. School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Joachim Say Chye Loo,

    1. Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    2. School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Staffan Kjelleberg,

    1. Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
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  • Liang Yang,

    Corresponding author
    1. Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    2. School of Biological Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    • Correspondence to: B. Cao or L. Yang

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  • Bin Cao

    Corresponding author
    1. School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    2. Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
    • Correspondence to: B. Cao or L. Yang

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ABSTRACT

While antibiotic resistance in bacteria is rapidly increasing, the development of new antibiotics has decreased in recent years. Antivirulence drugs disarming rather than killing pathogens have been proposed to alleviate the problem of resistance inherent to existing biocidal antibiotics. Here, we report a nontoxic biogenic nanomaterial as a novel antivirulence agent to combat bacterial infections caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We synthesized, in an environmentally benign fashion, tellurium nanorods (TeNRs) using the metal-reducing bacterium Shewanella oneidensis, and found that the biogenic TeNRs could effectively inhibit the production of pyoverdine, one of the most important virulence factors in P. aeruginosa. Our results suggest that amyloids and extracellular polysaccharides Pel and Psl are not involved in the interactions between P. aeruginosa and the biogenic TeNRs, while flagellar movement plays an important role in the cell–TeNRs interaction. We further showed that the TeNRs (up to 100 µg/mL) did not exhibit cytotoxicity to human bronchial epithelial cells and murine macrophages. Thus, biogenic TeNRs hold promise as a novel antivirulence agent against P. aeruginosa. Biotechnol. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2014;111: 858–865. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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