Determining the correlation between accessory gene regulator polymorphisms and Staphylococcus aureus sensitivity to 470 nm blue light
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Staphylococcus aureus is a Gram-positive pathogen responsible for minor skin infections, deep tissue infections, and even death. Due to the increasing resistance of S. aureus strains to antibiotics, it is important to investigate and develop alternative modes of treatment for bacterial infections. Photodynamic therapy using 470 nm blue light has been identified as a viable alternative to antibiotic treatment, however significant differences in the sensitivity of strains to blue light have been found. This project investigated the role of a genetic component, the accessory gene regulator (agr), found to be down-regulated in S. aureus isolates exposed to blue light. A statistically significant difference was found between the response of S. aureus isolates among agr groups, indicating that there exists a genetic basis for the varying responses of isolates to blue light therapy. However, further studies must be conducted to further elucidate the role of agr in the response to photodynamic therapy.