Novel detection of specific bacterial quorum sensing molecules in saliva: Potential non-invasive biomarkers for pulmonary Pseudomonas aeruginosa in cystic fibrosis

Karmel Webb*, Miguel Cámara, Nur Masirah M. Zain, Nigel Halliday, Kenneth D. Bruce, Edward F. Nash, Joanna L. Whitehouse, Alan Knox, Douglas Forrester, Alan R. Smyth, Paul Williams, Andrew Fogarty, Helen L. Barr

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Pseudomonas aeruginosa produces specific signalling molecules, 2-alkyl-4-quinolones (AQs) that are detectable in the sputum of adults with cystic fibrosis (CF) and who have pulmonary infection with this opportunistic pathogen. This study aimed to determine whether AQs could be detected in saliva of patients with CF and known infection with Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Saliva and sputum samples were obtained from 89 adults with CF and analyzed using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. AQs were detected in 39/89 (43.8%) saliva samples and 70/77(90.9%) sputum samples. Salivary AQs had a sensitivity of 50% (95%CI; 37.8; 62.2), specificity of 100% (95%CI; 47.8; 100), when compared to a molecular microbiological measure of P. aeruginosa in sputum as measured using polymerase chain reaction. Specific AQs produced by P. aeruginosa can be detected in the saliva and warrant investigation as potential non-invasive biomarkers of pulmonary P. aeruginosa.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal Of Cystic Fibrosis
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Quorum sensing

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