11. A review on the potential of antibacterial peptides to control biofilm resistance

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Iram Liaqat, Muhammad Mahd Nazir


Biofilms are comprised of communities of bacteria that are encased in the matrix. In biofilm, microbes become dormant and less sensitive to ordinary antibiotics. It is difficult for the antibiotics to penetrate and reach the depth of biofilm. These characteristics of biofilm make it 1000 times more resistant than planktonic microbes. Antibacterial peptides are used as an alternative of antibiotics to deal with the infections that are related to biofilm. Antibacterial peptides are small peptides that have broad action against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Significant mechanisms of antibacterial peptides are: 1) degradation or disruption of the membrane potential of biofilms’ embedded cell, 2) interruption of bacterial cells’ signaling system, 3) degradation of polysaccharides and matrix of biofilm, 4) inhibition of the bacterial alarmone to avoid the stringent responses and 5) down-regulation of the genes that are responsible for biofilm formation and transportation of the binding proteins. The main purpose of this review article is to summarize the fresh material related to antibacterial peptides, their activity, and mechanism of action against the biofilm. Furthermore, health community and society can get new information regarding the suitable alternatives of ordinary antibiotics to control resistance in biofilms.

Keywords: Antibacterial peptides; Anti-biofilm activity; Antibiotic alternatives; Biofilm; Biofilm degradation; Enhanced resistance


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