An overview on anti-biofilm properties of quercetin against bacterial pathogens

  • Hamed Memariani
  • Mojtaba MemarianiEmail author
  • Abdolmajid Ghasemian


Bacterial biofilms are multicellular aggregates enclosed in a self-created biopolymer matrix. Biofilm-producing bacteria have become a great public health problem worldwide because biofilms enable these microorganisms to evade several clearance mechanisms produced by host and synthetic sources. Over the past years, different flavonoids including quercetin have engrossed considerable interest among researchers owing to their potential anti-biofilm properties. To our knowledge, there is no review regarding effects of quercetin towards bacterial biofilms, prompting us to summarize experimental evidence on its anti-biofilm properties. Quercetin inhibits biofilm development by a diverse array of bacterial pathogens such as Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus mutans, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Prevention of bacterial adhesion, suppression of quorum-sensing pathways, disruption or alteration of plasma membrane, inhibition of efflux pumps, and blocking nucleic acid synthesis have been documented as major anti-biofilm mechanisms of quercetin. Overall, anti-biofilm activity of quercetin can open up new horizons in a wide range of biomedical areas, from food industry to medicine.


Anti-biofilm Quercetin Bacteria Quorum-sensing Adhesion 



Not applicable.

Authors’ contributions

HM and MM wrote the manuscript. AG and MM performed data collection and management. MM and HM contributed to revision of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Skin Research CenterShahid Beheshti University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologyFasa University of Medical SciencesFasaIran

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