Y. Nitzan, R. Dror, H. Ladan, Z. Malik, S. Kimel, V. Gottfried

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Abstract— The antibacterial photodynamic effects of uncharged (o‐tetrahydroxyphenyl porphine [THPP], m‐THPP and p‐THPP), cationic (5,10,15,20‐tetra[4‐N‐methylpyridyllporphine [TMPyP]) and anionic (5,10,15,20‐tetra[4‐sulfonatophenyl porphine] [TPPS4]) porphines on Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli bacteria inactivation were examined. The results show that uncharged porphines provoked antibacterial photodynamic activity on S. aureus, and also on E. coli in the presence of the membrane‐disorganizing peptide polymixin B nonapeptide (PMNP). The TMPyP compound was highly photoactive toward gram‐positive bacteria but only marginally effective on gram‐negative cells, whereas TPPS4 showed no activity on either gram‐positive or gram‐negative bacteria. The photoactivity of TMPyP is due to the electrostatic attraction between the positively charged sensitizer molecule and the negatively charged membrane of the gram‐positive target cells. For TPPS4, the inactivity toward gram‐positive bacteria is due to electrostatic repulsion between the charged sensitizer molecule and the cell membrane. For gram‐negative bacteria, the inactivity is conceivably due to preferential (electrostatic) binding to the positively charged PMNP, which is an adjuvant for membrane disorganization, but has no effect on cell viability. For hydrophobic sensitizers, the photoactivity depends on the state of aggregation. The extent of deaggregation of the different THPP isomers was determined by fluorescence measurements of bound sensitizers and could be positively correlated with their photoinactivation capacity. We conclude that the structure‐activity relationships of these porphines are affected by their net charge and by aggregation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)342-347
Number of pages6
JournalPhotochemistry and Photobiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1995


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