Bacterial spoilage of food products is regulated by density dependent communication system called quorum sensing (QS). QS control biofilm formation in numerous food pathogens and Biofilms formed on food surfaces act as carriers of bacterial contamination leading to spoilage of food and health hazards. Agents inhibiting or interfering with bacterial QS and biofilm are gaining importance as a novel class of next-generation food preservatives/packaging material. In the present study, Zinc nanostructures were synthesised using Nigella sativa seed extract (NS-ZnNPs). Synthesized nanostructures were characterized hexagonal wurtzite structure of size ∼24 nm by UV-visible, XRD, FTIR and TEM. NS-ZnNPs demonstrated broad-spectrum QS inhibition in C. violaceum and P. aeruginosa biosensor strains. Synthesized nanostructures inhibited QS regulated functions of C. violaceum CVO26 (violacein) and elastase, protease, pyocyanin and alginate production in PAO1 significantly. NS-ZnNPs at sub-inhibitory concentrations inhibited the biofilm formation of four-food pathogens viz. C. violaceum 12472, PAO1, L. monocytogenes, E. coli. Moreover, NS-ZnNPs was found effective in inhibiting pre-formed mature biofilms of the four pathogens. Therefore, the broad-spectrum inhibition of QS and biofilm by biogenic Zinc oxide nanoparticles and it is envisaged that these nontoxic bioactive nanostructures can be used as food packaging material and/or as food preservative.
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