Blue light phototherapy kills antibiotic-resistant bacteria, according to new studies

December 16, 2013
©2013, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

New Rochelle, NY, December16, 2013—Blue light has proven to have powerful bacteria-killing ability in the laboratory. The potent antibacterial effects of irradiation using light in the blue spectra have now also been demonstrated in human and animal tissues. A series of groundbreaking articles that provide compelling evidence of this effect are published in Photomedicine and Laser Surgery.

"Bacterial resistance to drugs poses a major healthcare problem," says Co-Editor-in-Chief Chukuka S. Enwemeka, PhD, Dean, College of Health Sciences, University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee, in the accompanying Editorial "Antimicrobial Blue Light: An Emerging Alternative to Antibiotics," citing the growing number of deadly outbreaks worldwide of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The articles in this issue of Photomedicine and Laser Surgery provide evidence that " in the range of 405-470 nm wavelength is bactericidal and has the potential to help stem the ongoing pandemic of MRSA and other bacterial infections."

In the article "Effects of Photodynamic Therapy on Gram-Positive and Gram-Negative Bacterial Biofilms by Bioluminescence Imaging and Scanning Electron Microscopic Analysis," Aguinaldo S. Garcez, PhD and coauthors show that and methylene blue delivered directly into the root canal of a human tooth infected with a bacterial biofilm was able to destroy both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, disrupt the biofilms, and reduce the number of bacteria adhering to the tooth.

Raymond J. Lanzafame, MD, MBA, and colleagues demonstrated significantly greater bacterial reduction in the treatment of pressure ulcers in mice using a combination of photoactivated collagen-embedded compounds plus 455 nm diode laser irradiation compared to irradiation alone or no treatment. The antibacterial effect of the combined therapy increased with successive treatments, report the authors in the article "Preliminary Assessment of Photoactivated Antimicrobial Collagen on Bioburden in a Murine Pressure Ulcer Model."

In the article "Wavelength and Bacterial Density Influence the Bactericidal Effect of Blue Light on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)," Violet Bumah, PhD and coauthors compared the bacteria-killing power of 405 nm versus 470 nm light on colonies of resistant Staph aureus and how the density of the could limit light penetration and the bactericidal effects of treatment.

Explore further: UVC light kills wound bacteria

Related Stories

UVC light kills wound bacteria

July 23, 2012

Ultraviolet (UVC) light can eradicate wound-infecting bacteria on mice increasing both survival and healing rates, according to a paper in the July 2012 issue of Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. The light did not damage ...

Pediatric musculoskeletal MRSA infections on the rise

October 26, 2013

Pediatric musculoskeletal Staphylococcus aureus bacterial infections have been evolving over the past decade, with more children diagnosed with the more virulent, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) today than ...

Recommended for you

Outside the body, a heart beats via life-saving system

September 1, 2015

(Medical Xpress)—A system that enables heart transplants involving hearts that stopped beating in the donor's body continues to save lives. The Organ Care System (OCS) has been used in UK hospitals with good results.

A recipe for long-lasting livers

April 22, 2015

People waiting for organ transplants may soon have higher hopes of getting the help that they need in time. Researchers at the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology have developed a new technique that extends the time that ...

Surgeon to offer ideas on a way to do human head transplants

February 26, 2015

Sergio Canavero of the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group has made it known that he intends to announce at this summer's American Academy of Neurological and Orthopedic Surgeons meeting, that he believes he has put together ...

New tool helps guide brain cancer surgery

July 3, 2014

A tool to help brain surgeons test and more precisely remove cancerous tissue was successfully used during surgery, according to a Purdue University and Brigham and Women's Hospital study.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.