Inhibition of Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella enterica virulence factors by benzyl isothiocyanate.
Food Microbiol. 2020 Apr ;86:103303. Epub 2019 Aug 16. PMID: 31703885
Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella enterica are foodborne pathogens with major public health concern in the U.S. These pathogens utilize several virulence factors to initiate infections in humans. The antimicrobial effect of seven glucosinolate hydrolysis compounds against Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 was investigated by the disc diffusion assay. Among the tested compounds, benzyl isothiocyanate (BIT), which exerted the highest antimicrobial activity, was evaluated for its anti-virulence properties against these pathogens. The effect of BIT on motility of Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 and Shiga toxin production by E. coli O157:H7 was determined by the motility assay and ELISA procedure, respectively. Confocal and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) procedures were used to determine bacterial damage at the cellular level. Results revealed that sub-inhibitory concentrations (SICs) of BIT significantly inhibited the motility of both bacteria (P < 0.05). Shiga toxin production by E. coli O157:H7 was decreased by ~32% in the presence of BIT at SICs. TEM results showed the disruption of outer membrane, release of cytoplasmic contents, and cell lysis following BIT treatment. Results suggest that BIT could be potentially used to attenuate Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 infections by reducing the virulence factors including bacterial motility and Shiga toxin production.