Propionibacterium acnes

Jump to: navigation, search
Propionibacterium acnes
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Bacteria
Phylum: Actinobacteria
Order: Actinomycetales
Family: Propionibacteriaceae
Genus: Propionibacterium
Species: P. acnes
Binomial name
Propionibacterium acnes
(Gilchrist 1900)
Douglas & Gunter 1946

Acne vulgaris Microchapters

Home

Patient Information

Overview

Historical Perspective

Classification

Pathophysiology

Causes

Differentiating Acne Vulgaris from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors

Natural History, Complications and Prognosis

Diagnosis

History and Symptoms

Physical Examination

Laboratory Findings

Electrocardiogram

X-ray

Echocardiography and Ultrasound

CT scan

MRI

Other Imaging Findings

Other Diagnostic Studies

Treatment

Medical Therapy

Surgery

Primary Prevention

Secondary Prevention

Cost-Effectiveness of Therapy

Future or Investigational Therapies

Case Studies

Case #1

Propionibacterium acnes On the Web

Most recent articles

Most cited articles

Review articles

CME Programs

Powerpoint slides

Images

American Roentgen Ray Society Images of Propionibacterium acnes

All Images
X-rays
Echo & Ultrasound
CT Images
MRI

Ongoing Trials at Clinical Trials.gov

US National Guidelines Clearinghouse

NICE Guidance

FDA on Propionibacterium acnes

CDC on Propionibacterium acnes

Propionibacterium acnes in the news

Blogs on Propionibacterium acnes

Directions to Hospitals Treating Acne vulgaris

Risk calculators and risk factors for Propionibacterium acnes

This page is about microbiologic aspects of the organism(s).  For clinical aspects of the disease, see Acne vulgaris.

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]

Overview

Propionibacterium acnes is a relatively slow growing, (typically) aerotolerant anaerobic gram positive bacterium that is linked to the skin condition acne; it can also cause chronic blepharitis and endophthalmitis, the latter particularly following intraocular surgery. The genome of the bacterium has been sequenced and a study of the bacterial genome has shown several genes that can generate enzymes for degrading skin and proteins that may be immunogenic (activate the immune system).

This bacteria is largely commensal and thus present on most people's skin; and lives on fatty acids in the sebaceous glands on sebum secreted by pores. It may also be found throughout the gastrointestinal tract in humans and many other animals. It is named after its ability to generate propionic acid.

Role in disease

When a pore is blocked this anaerobic bacteria overgrows and secretes chemicals that break down the wall of the pore, spilling bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus into the skin, and forming an acne lesion (folliculitis).

It has also been found in corneal ulcers, and on very few occasions damaging heart valves leading to endocarditis, and infections of joints (septic arthritis) have been reported.

Antibiotic sensitivity

P. acnes can be killed by benzoyl peroxide, tetracycline group and other antibiotics, and many antibacterial preparations. However, tetracycline-resistant P. acnes is now quite common. Clindamycin is also frequently used. New facts show,that P.acnes are sensitive to some macrolides such as Azithromycin, which has a wide spectrum of action. It is normally prescribed 500 mg by mouth, three times weekly for 4 to 6 weeks. Azithromycin exhibits post-antibiotic effect by concentrating in the lung tissue for approximately 5 days.Indeed some antibacterial cream or ointment should be used during the therapy, giving a good local effect. Another antibiotic is Nadifloxacin from the group of so called 4-fluoroquinolones (such as Ciprofloxacin, Ofloxacin, Levofloxacin). It has action against P. acnes and some other microorganisms that also take part of the poly-infection.

Photosensitivity

P. acnes glows when exposed to Wood's light—believed to be due to the presence of endogenous porphyrins.

The bacteria is killed by ultraviolet light. P. acnes is also especially sensitive to light in the 405–420 nm (near the ultraviolet) range due to an endogenic porphyrin–coporphyrin III. A total irradiance of 320 J/cm^2 is found to inactivate this bacteria in vitro. This fact is used in phototherapy.

The photosensitivity can be enhanced by pretreatment with aminolevulinic acid which boosts production of this chemical, although this causes significant side-effects in humans.

References


Linked-in.jpg