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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 648257, 7 pages
Research Article

Effect of Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine with Antiquorum Sensing Activity on Pseudomonas aeruginosa

1Department of Microbiology, School of Life Science & Technology, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, China
2School of International Pharmaceutical Business, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, China
3Jiangsu Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau, Nanjing 210001, China

Received 11 June 2013; Accepted 7 September 2013

Academic Editor: Andreas Sandner-Kiesling

Copyright © 2013 Weihua Chu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Traditional Chinese herbal medicines (TCHMs) were tested for their ability of antiquorum sensing. Water extracts of Rhubarb, Fructus gardeniae, and Andrographis paniculata show antiquorumsensing activity when using Chromobacterium violaceum CV12472 as reporter; the sub-MIC concentrations of these TCHMs were tested against AHL-dependent phenotypic expressions of PAO1. Results showed significant reduction in pyocyanin pigment, protease, elastase production, and biofilm formation in PAO1 without inhibiting the bacterial growth, revealing that the QSI by the extracts is not related to static or killing effects on the bacteria. The results indicate a potential modulation of bacterial cell-cell communication, P. aeruginosa biofilm, and virulence factors by traditional Chinese herbal medicine. This study introduces not only a new mode of action for traditional Chinese herbal medicines, but also a potential new therapeutic direction for the treatment of bacterial infections, which have QSI activity and might be important in reducing virulence and pathogenicity of pathogenic bacteria.