Curvularia haloperoxidase: Antimicrobial activity and potential application as a surface disinfectant

E.H. Hansen, Line Albertsen, Charlotte Johansen, T. Schafer, C. Johansen, Jens Christian Frisvad, Søren Molin, Lone Gram

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A presumed antimicrobial enzyme system, the Curvularia haloperoxidase system, was examined with the aim of evaluating its potential as a sanitizing agent. In the presence of hydrogen peroxide, Curpularia haloperoxidase facilitates the oxidation of halides, such as chloride, bromide, and iodide, to antimicrobial compounds. The Curvularia haloperoxidase system caused several-log-unit reductions in counts of bacteria (Pseudomonas spp., Escherichia coli, Serratia marcescens, Aeromonas salmonicida, Shewanella putrefaciens, Staphylococcus epidermidis, and Listeria monocytogenes), yeasts (Candida sp. and Rhodotorula sp.), and filamentous fungi (Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus tubigensis, Aspergillus versicolor, Fusarium oxysporum, Penicillium chrysogenum, and Penicillium paxilli) cultured in suspension. Also, bacteria adhering to the surfaces of contact lenses were killed. The numbers of S. marcescens and S. epidermidis cells adhering to contact lenses were reduced from 4.0 and 4.9 log CFU to 1.2 and 2.7 log CFU, respectively, after treatment with the Curvularia haloperoxidase system. The killing effect of the Curvularia haloperoxidase system was rapid, and 10(6) CFU of E. coli cells/ml were eliminated within 10 min of treatment. Furthermore, the antimicrobial effect was short lived, causing no antibacterial effect against E. coli 10 min after the system was mixed. Bovine serum albumin (1%) and alginate (1%) inhibited the antimicrobial activity of the Curvularia haloperoxidase system, whereas glucose and Tween 20 did not affect its activity. In conclusion, the Curvularia haloperoxidase system is an effective sanitizing system and has the potential for a vast range of applications, for instance, for disinfection of contact lenses or medical devices.
Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)4611-4617
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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