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Keywords:

  • biofilm development;
  • Candida albicans;
  • extracellular DNA;
  • genomic DNA;
  • hyphal form

Abstract

Aims

The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of genomic DNA purified from Candida albicans and pneumonia-related pathogens, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus, on in vitro biofilm formation and morphological change of 3 Candida species (C. albicans, C. glabrata, and C. tropicalis).

Methods and Results

Biofilm formation was evaluated by the crystal violet assay and colony-forming unit counts. Morphological characteristics of biofilms were evaluated by scanning electron microscopy and fluorescence microscopy. Addition of DNA at a low concentration (<1·0 μg ml−1) significantly increased biofilm mass of all three Candida species. In contrast, the addition of DNA at a high concentration (10 μg ml−1) decreased the biofilm mass. Interestingly, the formation of hyphae in a dense network of yeast cells was observed in C. albicans biofilms exposed to a low concentration of DNA (<1·0 μg ml−1).

Conclusions

These findings demonstrated that extracellular DNA (eDNA) plays a crucial role in Candida biofilm formation and suggested that eDNA may induce the morphological transition from yeast to hyphal growth form during C. albicans biofilm development.

Significance and Impact of the Study

A novel therapy targeting eDNA may be applicable for Candida infection to decrease biofilm formation and hyphal formation.