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Vet J. 2006 May;171(3):398-407.

Biofilms: a role in recurrent mastitis infections?

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Department of Veterinary Pharmacology Pharmacy and Toxicology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Utrecht, P.O. Box 80152, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Mastitis remains one the most important diseases in dairy cattle despite the progress made in improving general udder health in recent years. Epidemiological studies have revealed that following treatment with antimicrobials, bacteriological cure rates vary between 0% and 80% but with no evidence of a significant loss of activity of the major classes of antibiotics licensed for the treatment of bovine mastitis. Recurrent infections are often attributable to biofilm growth of bacteria and this review provides an overview of those mechanisms related to bacterial biofilm growth in mastitis. Biofilm formation is accompanied by significant genetic and subsequent physiological changes in the microorganisms resulting, inter alia, in a loss of sensitivity to virtually all classes of antibiotics.

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