Inactivating Clostridium difficile spores is difficult, as they are resistant to heat, chemicals, and antimicrobials. However, this note describes inactivation of C. difficile spore outgrowth by incubation in a solution containing a germinant (1% (m/v) sodium taurocholate), co-germinants (1% (m/v) tryptose and 1% (m/v) NaCl), and natural antimicrobials (20 nmol·L–1 nisin and 0.2 mmol·L–1 lysozyme). Clostridium difficile spores were resistant to nisin and lysozyme but became susceptible during germination and outgrowth triggered and promoted by sodium taurocholate, tryptose, and NaCl. The degree of inactivation of germinated and outgrowing C. difficile spores by both nisin and lysozyme was greater than the sum of that by nisin and lysozyme individually, suggesting synergistic inactivation of C. difficile spores. The germinant, co-germinants, and natural antimicrobials used in this study are safe for human contact and consumption. Therefore, these findings will facilitate the development of a safe and effective method to inactivate C. difficile spore.
- Clostridium difficile
- Synergistic inactivation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
- Molecular Biology