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Authors: P. A. S. Theophilus, M. J. Victoria, K. M. Socarras, K. R. Filush, K. Gupta, D. F. Luecke and E. Sapi

Lyme disease is a tick-borne multisystemic disease caused by Borrelia burgdorferi. Administering antibiotics is the primary treatment for this disease; however, relapse often occurs when antibiotic treatment is discontinued. The reason for relapse remains unknown, but recent studies suggested the possibilities of the presence of antibiotic resistant Borrelia persister cells and biofilms.

In this study, we evaluated the effectiveness of whole leaf Stevia extract against B. burgdorferi spirochetes, persisters, and biofilm forms in vitro. The susceptibility of the different forms was evaluated by various quantitative techniques in addition to different microscopy methods. The effectiveness of Stevia was compared to doxycycline, cefoperazone, daptomycin, and their combinations. Our results demonstrated that Stevia had significant effect in eliminating B. burgdorferi spirochetes and persisters. Subculture experiments with Stevia and antibiotics treated cells were established for 7 and 14 days yielding, no and 10% viable cells, respectively compared to the above-mentioned antibiotics and antibiotic combination. When Stevia and the three antibiotics were tested against attached biofilms, Stevia significantly reduced B. burgdorferi forms. Results from this study suggest that a natural product such as Stevia leaf extract could be considered as an effective agent against B. burgdorferi.

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Authors: Andrea Valasek, Írisz Éva Kiss, István Fodor, Márk Kovács, Péter Urbán, Éva Jámbor, Csaba Fekete and Ildikó Kerepesi

. Butt , A. , Higman , V. A. , Williams , C. , Crump , M. P. , Hemsley , C. M. , Harmer , N. , Titball , R. W. ( 2014 ) The HicA toxin from Bulkholderia pseudomallei has role in persister cell formation . Biochem. J. 459 , 333 – 344

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Authors: E. Sapi, K. Balasubramanian, A. Poruri, J. S. Maghsoudlou, K. M. Socarras, A. V. Timmaraju, K. R. Filush, K. Gupta, S. Shaikh, P. A. S. Theophilus, D. F. Luecke, A. MacDonald and B. Zelger

-tolerant persister cells . Antimicrob Agents Chemother 59 , 4616 – 4624 ( 2015 ) 41. Eisendle K , Grabner T , Zelger B : Focus floating microscopy: “Gold

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Authors: Ali Shivaee, Rokhsareh Mohammadzadeh, Shahla Shahbazi, Elahe Pardakhtchi, Elnaz Ohadi and Behrooz Sadeghi Kalani

major role in the emergence of persister cells [ 14 ]. In type II TA systems, protein antitoxin is less stable than the protein toxin. In normal conditions, toxin is neutralized by antitoxin, whereas in stress conditions, antitoxin is selectively

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Authors: E. Sapi, K. Gupta, K. Wawrzeniak, G. Gaur, J. Torres, K. Filush, A. Melillo and B. Zelger

called extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) and persister cells with low metabolic activity helps the survival of community inside the biofilm [ 24 – 30 ]. Clinically, biofilm infections represent a very significant problem due to the extraordinary

Open access