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Plasma Sci. Technol. ›› 2018, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (6): 065513.doi: 10.1088/2058-6272/aab302

• Plasma Technology • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Control of multidrug-resistant planktonic Acinetobacter baumannii: biocidal efficacy study by atmospheric-pressure air plasma

Zhe RUAN (阮哲)1, Yajun GUO (郭亚俊)1, Jing GAO (高静)1, Chunjun YANG (杨春俊)1,6, Yan LAN (兰彦)2, Jie SHEN (沈洁)2, Zimu XU (许子牧)3, Cheng CHENG (程诚)2,6, Xinghao LIU (刘行浩)3, Shumei ZHANG (张书梅)4, Wenhui DU (杜文辉)4 and Paul K CHU (朱剑豪)5,6   


  1.   1 Department of Dermatology, the Second Affiliated Hospital, Anhui Medical University, Hefei 230601, People’s Republic of China
     2 Institute of Plasma Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hefei 230031, People’s Republic of China
     3 School of Resources and Environmental Engineering, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei 230009, People’s Republic of China
     4 Department of Dermatology, the First Affiliated Hospital, Anhui Medical University, Hefei 230032, People’s Republic of China
     5 Department of Physics and Department of Materials Science and Engineering, City University of Hong Kong, Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong, People’s Republic of China
  • Received:2017-12-09 Published:2018-02-28
  • Supported by:

    This work is supported by the Spark Program of the second Affiliated Hospital of Anhui Medical University (Grant No. 2015hhjh04), National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant No. 51777206, Natural Science Foundation of Anhui Province (Grant No. 1708085MA13 and No. 1708085MB47), Science Foundation of Institute of Plasma Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences under Grant (No. DSJJ-14-YY02), City University of Hong Kong Applied Research Grant (ARG)(No. 9667144), Hong Kong Research Grants Council (RGC)General Research Funds (GRF)(No. CityU 11301215), Doctoral Fund of Ministry of Education of China (No. 2017M612058), Specialized Research Fund for the Doctoral Program of Hefei University of Technology (No. JZ2016HGBZ0768), Foundation of Anhui Province Key Laboratory of Medical Physics and Technology (Grant No. LMPT2017Y7BP0U1581).


In this research, an atmospheric-pressure air plasma is used to inactivate the multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii in liquid. The efficacy of the air plasma on bacterial deactivation and the cytobiological variations after the plasma treatment are investigated. According to colony forming units, nearly all the bacteria (6-log) are inactivated after 10 min of air plasma treatment. However, 7% of the bacteria enter a viable but non-culturable state detected by the resazurin based assay during the same period of plasma exposure. Meanwhile, 86% of the bacteria lose their membrane integrity in the light of SYTO 9/PI staining assay. The morphological changes in the cells are examined by scanning electron microscopy and bacteria with morphological changes are rare after plasma exposure in the liquid. The concentrations of the long-living RS, such as H2O2, NO3- ,and O3, in liquid induced by plasma treatment are measured, and they  increase with plasma treatment time. The changes of the intracellular ROS may be related to cell death, which may be attributed to oxidative stress and other damage effects induced by RS plasma generated in liquid. The rapid and effective bacteria inactivation may stem from the RS in the liquid generated by plasma and air plasmas may become a valuable therapy in the treatment of infected wounds.

Key words: atmospheric-pressure air plasma, multidrug-resistant bacteria, Acinetobacter baumannii, inactivation, reactive species