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J Appl Bacteriol. 1995 Jul;79(1):87-93.

A simple in vitro model for growth control of bacterial biofilms.

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Department of Pharmacy, University of Manchester, UK.


The perfused biofilm fermenter was found to be unsuitable for the long-term culture and growth rate control of Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms. In a simplified approach, biofilms of these organisms were grown within Sorbarod filter plugs which were perfused with culture medium. Pseudo-steady states were established which were stable over several days at which the growth rate of the biofilm was reproducible, measurable and significantly slower than in broth culture. Environmental scanning electron microscopy of dissected Sorbarods demonstrated an association of cells with the surfaces of individual cellulose fibres, and growth characteristic of biofilms. Relatively high cell numbers recovered from the Sorbarod model facilitated biochemical investigations of biofilm populations and cells released spontaneously from them. SDS-PAGE demonstrated significant differences between the protein profiles of biofilm and eluted populations, which include, in Staph. aureus, the repression of a 48 kDa protein and increased expression of a 21 kDa protein relative to planktonic controls cultured at equivalent growth rates. The paper demonstrates the suitability of the approach for the culture of biofilm samples which are suitable for biochemical analysis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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