Send to

Choose Destination
Mar Biotechnol (NY). 2007 Jul-Aug;9(4):399-410. Epub 2007 May 12.

Marine biofilms as mediators of colonization by marine macroorganisms: implications for antifouling and aquaculture.

Author information

Department of Biology and Coastal Marine Lab, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clearwater Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong.


In the marine environment, biofilms on submerged surfaces can promote or discourage the settlement of invertebrate larvae and macroalgal spores. The settlement-mediating effects of biofilms are believed to involve a variety of biofilm attributes including surface chemistry, micro-topography, and a wide range of microbial products from small-molecule metabolites to high-molecular weight extracellular polymers. The settled organisms in turn can modify microbial species composition of biofilms and thus change the biofilm properties and dynamics. A better understanding of biofilm dynamics and chemical signals released and/or stored by biofilms will facilitate the development of antifouling and mariculture technologies. This review provides a brief account of 1) existing knowledge of marine biofilms that are relevant to settlement mediation, 2) biotechnological application of biofilms with respect to developing non-toxic antifouling technologies and improving the operation of aquaculture facilities, and 3) challenges and future directions for advancing our understanding of settlement-mediating functions of biofilms and for applying this knowledge to real-life situations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center