Completing the action of organic acids
To have an even higher impact on Gram negative bacteria in the GIT, phytochemicals are combined with organic acids. While the organic acids are working to reduce the ph of the environment in the dissociated form and having a direct antimicrobial action due to the non-dissociated form, phytochemicals like cinnamaldehyde are targeting the Ftsz proteins which play an essential role in the cell division of pathogenic bacteria. By blocking the Ftsz protein, cinnamaldehyde prevents the Z-ring formation during the pathogenic cell replication process, resulting in a reduced bacterial count in the GIT animals. It has been shown, that cinnamaldehyde targets only the pathogenic bacteria, not harming the beneficial bacteria. This sparing action of the beneficial bacteria like it is the case of organic acids and phytochemicals makes a big difference in comparison to antibiotics, which are not always able to target only pathogenic bacteria.