Photodynamic inactivation of Streptococcus mutans by curcumin in combination with EDTA

Gabriel Nima*, Jorge Soto-Montero, Lívia A. Alves, Renata O. Mattos-Graner, Marcelo Giannini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Objective: This study aimed to test the efficacy of photodynamic inactivation (PDI) mediated by curcumin with EDTA against Streptococcus mutans in planktonic suspension using blue LED light. Methods: Antibacterial activity of curcumin and EDTA was evaluated by determination of their minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimal bactericidal concentration (MBC). The fractional inhibitory concentration index (FICI) was used to estimate the synergistic effect of various combination ratios of curcumin and EDTA against S. mutans. Cultures of S. mutans (18 h, 37 °C, 5% C02) were prepared to test the effect of curcumin-mediated PDI (50 μM and 500 μM) with or without 0.4% EDTA and 40 s of light-activation with blue light. EDTA and each concentration of curcumin were also tested individually. Chlorhexidine (0.2%), was used as positive control. Planktonic suspensions were also analyzed by viable colony counts (VCC), confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Results: The MIC values of curcumin and EDTA were 5 mM and 0.125% respectively. FICI showed a synergistic interaction between curcumin and EDTA. All the combinations with curcumin and blue LED light resulted in a complete inactivation of the S. mutans and CLSM confirms these results, TEM showed morphological changes produced by the PDI. No damage on DNA structure was detected by PCR. Significance: Curcumin-mediated PDI with EDTA using a blue light, shows a strong inhibitory effect against S. mutans in planktonic culture. Because of the unspecific target mechanism, it could be a promising technique for disinfection of dental tissues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e1-e14
JournalDental Materials
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Academy of Dental Materials


  • Curcumin
  • Dental curing lights
  • Disinfection
  • Photodynamic therapy
  • Photosensitizing agents
  • Streptococcus mutans


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