Extracts of seaweeds as potential inhibitors of quorum sensing and bacterial growth

A. P. Carvalho*, D. Batista, S. Dobretsov, R. Coutinho

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Macroalgae are an important source of antimicrobial compounds. However, it is unclear if these compounds are produced by the algae themselves, by their associated bacteria, or by both. The main aim of this study was to investigate the potential of macroalgae and their associated microorganisms to inhibit bacterial quorum sensing (QS) and growth. Before extraction, half of the algal specimens were treated with 30% ethanol to remove surface associated bacteria. Canistrocarpus cervicornis extracts were able to inhibit QS of the reporter Chromobacterium violaceum CV017, where extracts with associated bacteria were more efficient than those without bacteria. However, not all algal extracts that inhibited QS of CV017 were able to inhibit bacterial attachment of Pseudomonas aeruginosas PA01, showing specific activity of algal metabolites. Only 58% of the extracts showed antibacterial activity against eight marine fouling and pathogenic bacterial strains tested. Our data suggests that algae and their associated microbiota are important sources of antimicrobial compounds which potentially can be used in future biotechnological applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)789-797
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Applied Phycology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2017


  • Bacteria
  • Biofouling
  • Macroalgae
  • Quorum sensing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Plant Science


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