Synergistic and Antagonistic Effects of Phenylalanine and Various Antibiotics on the Growth of Pathogenic Bacteria

  • Fatih SenEmail author
  • Mohamed Abdulhamid Ganim
  • Mehmet Cengiz BalogluEmail author
  • Aysenur Aygun
  • Hakan Sezgin Sayiner
  • Yasemin Celik Altunoglu
  • Fatma Kandemirli
  • Buse Demirkan
  • Esra Kuyuldar
  • Ela Bulut


Broad-spectrum antibiotics have been widely used in the treatment of many systemic and local infections in humans and animals. Herein, we aimed to determine the synergistic and antagonistic effects of phenylalanine with antibiotics cefoxitin, amoxicillin, vancomycin, lincomycin, and bacitracin against 14 pathogenic bacteria. The effect of antibiotics, either alone or in combination with this biomolecular liquid, was tested using the disk diffusion method against different bacteria. The addition of phenylalanine to antibiotic disks directly affected their antimicrobial activity. All the antibiotics used did not show any antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus haemolyticus when used alone. However, in combination with phenylalanine, each antibiotic inhibited the growth of S. haemolyticus. The use of this biomolecular liquid together with amoxicillin and vancomycin also increased the antimicrobial activity against Enterococcus durans. The use of phenylalanine in combination with antibiotics also resulted in antagonistic effects on some pathogens. Further, the effects of antibiotics in combination with phenylalanine on different bacterial pathogens were investigated in vitro. Results provide valuable information to further our understanding of the molecular mechanism of action of antibiotics and to improve their efficacy against bacterial pathogens.


Antagonistic-synergetic effect Pathogenic bacteria strains Phenylalanine 


Funding information

This study was supported by the Research Fund of Kastamonu University Grant No. KÜBAP-01/2016-40.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

12668_2019_597_MOESM1_ESM.docx (29 kb)
Table S1 (DOCX 28 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sen Research Group, Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Arts and ScienceDumlupınar UniversityKütahyaTurkey
  2. 2.Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Department of Genetics and BioengineeringKastamonu UniversityKastamonuTurkey
  3. 3.Faculty of Medicine, Department of Infectious DiseasesAdiyaman UniversityAdiyamanTurkey
  4. 4.Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Department of Biomedical EngineeringKastamonu UniversityKastamonuTurkey

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