The natural compound trans-chalcone found in licorice root prevents caries-causing biofilm formation, according to a new study in the journal Chemical Communications (May 18, 2015).
Researchers at the University of Edinburgh found that trans-chalcone prevents bacteria from forming biofilms. The team was also able to identify how trans-chalcone stopped the biofilm-forming enzyme, Sortase A, from functioning.
"We were delighted to observe that trans-chalcone inhibited Sortase A in a test tube and stopped Steptococcus mutans biofilm formation," stated lead researcher Dominic Campopiano, PhD, in a press release. "We are expanding our study to include similar natural products and investigate if they can be incorporated into consumer products."