African Journal of
Microbiology Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Microbiol. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0808
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJMR
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 5232

Full Length Research Paper

Comparative inhibitory effect of xylitol and erythritol on the growth and biofilm formation of oral Streptococci

Gholam Reza Ghezelbash*, Iraj Nahvi and Mohammad Rabbani      
  Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Isfahan, Isfahan 81746-73441, Iran.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 22 March 2012
  •  Published: 30 May 2012


Our aims were to examine the effects of xylitol and a novel polyol sweetener, erythritol, on growth of oral Streptococci and compare their effects. The inhibitory effects of xylitol and erythritol on Streptococcus strains, as well as on streptococcal biofilm formation were examined. Streptococcus mutansStreptococcus sobrinus, and Streptococcus sanguiniswere used as representatives of oral Streptococci. The effects of these polyols on biofilm formation were determined by microtiter plate assay. The growth was compared at each experiment using analysis of variance of repeated measures (SPSS 16.0 for Windows). Our results indicated that in the presence of 4% xylitol and 4% erythritol the growth of S. mutans was decreased by 68 and 71%, respectively. Biofilm formation by S. mutans was reduced to 31.32% in the presence of 4% erythritol. Regardless of concentration, in general, erythritol was found more effective than xylitol in inhibiting the growth and biofilm formation of Streptococci strains used in this study. Xylitol and especially erythritol both inhibited microplate surface adherence of oral Streptococci, which are known to contribute to plaque accumulation.


Key words: Xylitol, erythritol, oral Streptococci, biofilm, microtiter plate assay.