Send to

Choose Destination
Bull Math Biol. 2005 Jul;67(4):831-53. Epub 2004 Dec 15.

Modeling physiological resistance in bacterial biofilms.

Author information

Mathematics Department, Tulane University, 6823 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118, USA.


A mathematical model of the action of antimicrobial agents on bacterial biofilms is presented. The model includes the fluid dynamics in and around the biofilm, advective and diffusive transport of two chemical constituents and the mechanism of physiological resistance. Although the mathematical model applies in three dimensions, we present two-dimensional simulations for arbitrary biofilm domains and various dosing strategies. The model allows the prediction of the spatial evolution of bacterial population and chemical constituents as well as different dosing strategies based on the fluid motion. We find that the interaction between the nutrient and the antimicrobial agent can reproduce survival curves which are comparable to other model predictions as well as experimental results. The model predicts that exposing the biofilm to low concentration doses of antimicrobial agent for longer time is more effective than short time dosing with high antimicrobial agent concentration. The effects of flow reversal and the roughness of the fluid/biofilm are also investigated. We find that reversing the flow increases the effectiveness of dosing. In addition, we show that overall survival decreases with increasing surface roughness.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center