Synthesis of silver nanoparticles and its synergistic effects in combination with imipenem and two biocides against biofilm producing Acinetobacter baumannii

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Medical Nanotechnology, School of Advanced Technologies in Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Biofilms are communities of bacteria attached to surfaces through an external polymeric substances matrix. In the meantime, Acinetobacterbaumannii is the predominant species related to nosocomial infections. In the present study, the effect of silver nanoparticles alone and in combination with biocides and imipenem against planktonic and biofilms of A. baumannii was assessed. 
Materials and Methods:  
Minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of 75 planktonic isolates of A. baumannii were determined by using the microdilution method as described via clinical and laboratory standards institute (CLSI). Among all strains, 10 isolates which formed strong biofilms were selected and exposed to silver nanoparticles alone and in combination with imipenem, bismuth ethandithiol (BisEDT) and bismuth propanedithiol (BisPDT) to determine minimum biofilm inhibitory concentrations (MBIC). Subsequently, minimum biofilm eradication concentrations (MBECs) of silver nanoparticles alone and in combination with imipenem against mature biofilm of the isolates were evaluated. 
Results showed that 29.3% of isolates were susceptible to silver nanoparticles and could inhibit the growth and eradicate biofilms produced by the isolates. For this reason, ∑FIC, ∑FBIC and ∑FBEC ≤ 0.05 were reported which shows synergism between silver nanoparticles and imipenem against not only planktonic cells but also inhibition and eradication of biofilms. The results of ∑FBIC >2 indicated to antagonistic impacts between silver nanoparticles and BisEDT/BisPDT against biofilms. 
It can be concluded that silver nanoparticles alone can inhibit biofilm formation but in combination with imipenem are more effective against A. baumannii in planktonic and biofilm forms.


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