In the study, we investigated the antibacterial activity and mechanism of gallic acid against
Aeromonas hydrophila and Aeromonas sobria. Gallic acid showed strong antimicrobial activity against
the two bacteria. Furthermore, the antibacterial mechanism of gallic acid (0, 3, 6, 12 mM) was
performed by membrane integrity assay and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) assay. The results
showed that gallic acid notably increased the released material absorption value at 260, 280 nm and
electric conductivity in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, the SEM assay showed that gallic acid
induced severe shrink of bacterial intima and irregular morphology in a dose-dependent manner. The
SDS-PAGE profiles further confirmed that gallic acid could damage bacterial cells. These results indicated
gallic acid exhibited antibacterial effect by destroying membrane integrity of A. hydrophila and A.
sobria. Hence, gallic acid has great potential as a new natural food preservative in food fresh-keeping
Keywords: Gallic acid, Aeromonas hydrophila, Aeromonas sobria, antibacterial activity, membrane integrity, cell morphology.
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