Supplements to Combat Biofilm: Part 2

Supplements to Combat Biofilm: Part 2

Another way to eliminate biofilm is to degrade the EPS matrix that protects the bacteria.

Biofilm are held together by an exopolysaccharide matrix. The protective exopolysaccharide matrix encases the bacteria and has water channels that acts as a transport medium to exchange biochemical signals and nutrients between enclosed bacteria. The matrix also protects the bacteria from oxidative damage caused by antimicrobial agents and increases their resistance. 1 2

There are many different supplements that can damage this exopolysaccharide matrix and allow antimicrobial agents to eliminate the bacteria.

Colloidal Silver

Colloidal silver (particles of silver that are suspended in a medium) is a potent antimicrobial / anti biofilm agent. Like lactoferrin and EDTA, silver chelates iron. Restriction of iron by colloidal silver reduces bacteria’s capability to produce biofilm, creates excessive oxidative stress, and ultimately eliminates bacteria. Silver also punctures tiny holes into the EPS, damaging the integrity of the EPS, which makes it easier for antimicrobials and immune cells to eliminate the bacteria. A recent study shows that the combined use of colloidal silver with antibiotics can make previous resistant bacteria become susceptible to commonly prescribed antibiotics again. The proposed mechanism of action is oxidative damage done to the EPS due to the colloidal silver allowing the bacteria to become sensitive to antibiotics again. 3 4

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One of the most effective ways to eliminate biofilm is to dissolve the EPS matrix by using enzymes. The EPS matrix consists of proteins, nucleotides, and saccharides. 5 Enzymes can break those components down, therefore reducing them which weakens the matrix. Enzymes dissolve both bacterial and yeast biofilms. Protease can be used to break down the proteins that composed the EPS matrix. Saccharides can be broken down by using glucoamylase, pectinase, cellulase, beta-glucanse, and chitosanace. Lysozyme reduces peptidoglycans (a polymer composed of sugars and amino acids) that make up a big part of the EPS. 6 7 8

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NAC reduces biofilm formation and adhesion which helps to eliminate bacteria from the body. NAC is not able to actively degrade exopolysaccharides like enzymes and collodial silver, but NAC appears to be able to disrupt exopolysaccharide production therefore weakening the EPS matrix. NAC seems to inhibit both EPS formation capabilities of yeast and bacteria. 9 10

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  1. Hi :)

    Thanks so much for this excellent article! Extremely helpful info! :)
    Would L-Cysteine work in the same way as NAC?

    Best wishes

  2. This is great info. Do you know which approach/supplements should work best against the biofilm of candida krusei?

  3. Just saw an ND who gave me monolaurin for yeast overgrowth. In the past, tried herbal antifungals which didn’t work, and now I’m reading this.

    Should lactoferrin or the like be added to monolaurin??

    Thanks :)

  4. What would you recommend for a BV infection ?

  5. How much silver would be recommended to take daily along with an antibiotic? Specifically Keflex 500 mg/ 3 times per day. Is a tablespoon along with the antibiotics good or would more/less be recommended to fight recurrent UTI. Thanks!

    • silver may or may not be systemically absorbed well enough to help fight a recurrent UTI. I would ask your doctor, but you can try one TBSP with it daily with food. It may only effect the microbiome of the uppergut and further reduce Lactobacillus populations so watch out for that.

  6. Does it make sense to combine different biofilm chelaters?

    NAC + Interfase + Serrapeptase + Nattokinase ( = cumulative effect of 4×1) ?

    Does it matter which kind of Infection one is suffering from?

    • We truly do not know if the biofilm chelators are cumulative in effect or which kind is better depending on infections. We do know however that NAC and the systemic enzymes would work systemically. Where EDTA and lactoferrin would only restrict iron in the gut for microbes to reduce overgrowth and biofilm.

  7. Hi, can NAC be used in children as biofilm disruptor in the treatment of yeast overgroth?
    Thanks :)

    • NAC is a systemic biofilm chelator and a pro oxidant and doses above 1,200 mg daily so I do not recommend it as a front line biofilm chelator anymore. I cannot also recommend any supplements for children sadly, for liability issues.

      I would ask your doctor, but if you want to use NAC there are studies of its use in children.

  8. Hello

    Do you recommend chlorine dioxide as a biofilm disruptor?

  9. Silver is good, but bismuth (Pepto-Bismol) is better. Combining bismuth with organic thiols (fat-soluble sulfur compounds) allows it to penetrate bacteria and interfere with iron metabolism, and strongly inhibits the production of EPS and biofilm. There are several scientific papers on bismuth thiols that show its potential in combating slime. It is currently approaching Phase 2 clinical trials for orthopedic wound infections, which are usually biofilm related. Check out the progress at

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