PLANT BIOSYSTEMS, vol.152, no.3, pp.376-385, 2018 (SCI-Expanded)
Quorum sensing (QS) is a widespread mechanism utilized by both Gram (+) and Gram (-) bacteria for communication and regulation of specific virulence traits and phenotypes due to population density. Plants are known to produce a number of compounds that can inhibit this communication and most of them have been discovered through well-known Chromobacterium violaceum biomonitor strains assays. In this study, we have analyzed 36 extracts, from 26 Turkish plant species, for their effects on bacterial growth and inhibition or induction of QS in the said biomonitoring assay. Four of the crude plant extracts from Tanacetum balsamita L. subsp. balsamitoides (Compositaceae), Epilobium angustifolium L. (Onograceae), Quercus frainetto Ten. (Fagaceae) and Quercus robur L. (Fagaceae) showed QS inhibitory activity and significantly reduced violacein production in C. violaceum. Particularly, ethyl acetate soluble compounds extracted from leaves of Quercus spp. were efficient in QS inhibition without any apparent increase in bacterial growth. On the other hand, extracts from Mentha longifolia subsp. longifolia and Hypericum orientale showed enhanced violacein production, thus increasing QS-dependent behaviour. Our results clearly demonstrate the QS-inhibitory effects of Q. frainetto Ten., E. angustifolium and T. balsamita L. extracts, while two other species showed QS-inducing effects, for the first time.