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J Phys Chem B. 2005 May 19;109(19):9540-9.

Surface characterization of three marine bacterial strains by Fourier transform IR, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and time-of-flight secondary-ion mass spectrometry, correlation with adhesion on stainless steel surfaces.

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Laboratoire de Physico-Chimie des Surfaces, CNRS (UMR 7045) ENSCP, 11 rue P&M Curie, F-75005-Paris, France.


Adhesion of bacterial strains on solid substrates is likely related to the properties of the outer shell of the micro-organisms. Aiming at a better understanding and control of the biofilm formation in seawater, the surface chemical composition of three marine bacterial strains was investigated by combining Fourier transform IR spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and time-of-flight secondary-ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS). The D41 strain surface showed evidence of proteins, as deduced from the NH2 and NCO XPS and ToF-SIMS fingerprints; this strain was found to adhere to stainless steel, glass, or Teflon surfaces in a much higher quantity (2 orders of magnitude) than the two other ones, DA and D01. The latter are either enriched in COOH or sulfates, and this makes them more hydrophilic and less adherent to all substrates. Correlations with physicochemical properties and adhesion seem to demonstrate the role of the external layer composition, in particular the role of proteins more than that of hydrophobicity, on their adhesion abilities.

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