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Plant antimicrobial agents and their effects on plant and human pathogens.

González-Lamothe, R., Mitchell, G., Gattuso, M., Diarra, M.S., Malouin, F., and Bouarab, K. (2009). "Plant antimicrobial agents and their effects on plant and human pathogens.", International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 10(8), pp. 3400-3419. doi : 10.3390/ijms10083400  Access to full text


To protect themselves, plants accumulate an armoury of antimicrobial secondary metabolites. Some metabolites represent constitutive chemical barriers to microbial attack (phytoanticipins) and others inducible antimicrobials (phytoalexins). They are extensively studied as promising plant and human disease-controlling agents. This review discusses the bioactivity of several phytoalexins and phytoanticipins defending plants against fungal and bacterial aggressors and those with antibacterial activities against pathogens affecting humans such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus involved in respiratory infections of cystic fibrosis patients. The utility of plant products as “antibiotic potentiators” and “virulence attenuators” is also described as well as some biotechnological applications in phytoprotection.

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