Killing of anaerobic pathogens by predatory bacteria


Wim Teughels, Department of Periodontology, Catholic University Leuven, Kapucijnenvoer 7, 3000, Leuven, Belgium Tel.: +32 16 332505; fax: +32 16 332484; E-mail:


Recently, the predation of Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus on a periodontal pathogen has been described. The current study explores the potential antimicrobial activity of a range of predatory bacteria against key periodontal pathogens. A number of representatives from the Bdellovibrio, Bacteriovorax and Peredibacter lineages (called ‘BALOs’) were tested for their activity towards a group of key periodontal pathogens and an optimal multiplicity of infection was established. As the oral cavity contains a wide variety of bacteria that are not preyed upon, it was investigated if they can have an effect on the predation efficiency of BALOs. It was concluded that a number of important variables involved in bacterial predation are found to be compatible with the composition of the oral microbiota. This finding makes the case for continued study of the potential for BALOs to combat periodontal pathogens.