The antibiotic arms race moves at high speed

Acinetobacter baumannii is a pathogen that creates serious problems in hospitals throughout the world. It causes opportunistic infections in the bloodstream, urinary tract, and other soft tissues, accounting for as much as ...

How to control biofilms in space

Researchers from MIT will be collaborating with colleagues at the University of Colorado at Boulder on an experiment scheduled to be sent to the International Space Station (ISS) on Nov. 2. The experiment is looking for ways ...

Bacteria contradict Darwin: Survival of the friendliest

New microbial research at the University of Copenhagen suggests that 'survival of the friendliest' outweighs 'survival of the fittest' for groups of bacteria. Bacteria make space for one another and sacrifice properties if ...

Nanostructures help to reduce the adhesion of bacteria

Scientists have shown how bacteria adhere to rough surfaces at the microscopic level. Now a team of researchers has discovered that precise analysis of the topographical composition of nanostructured surfaces provides a direct ...

Researchers grow citrus disease bacteria in the lab

Washington State University researchers have for the first time grown the bacteria in a laboratory that causes Citrus Greening Disease, considered the world's most harmful citrus disease.

The art of worming through tight spaces

How active matter, such as assemblages of bacterial or epithelial cells, manages to expand into narrow spaces largely depends on their growth dynamics, as LMU physicists demonstrate in a newly published study.

Microorganisms protect iron sheet piling against degradation

A natural biofilm of oxygen-free microorganisms protects iron sheet piling against corrosion by depositing minerals on the wall. That is what researchers at the Radboud University, the Dutch Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) ...

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Biofilm

A biofilm is an aggregate of microorganisms in which cells are stuck to each other and/or to a surface. These adherent cells are frequently embedded within a self-produced matrix of extracellular polymeric substance (EPS). Biofilm EPS, which is also refered to as "slime," is a polymeric jumble of DNA, proteins and polysaccharides. Biofilms may form on living or non-living surfaces, and represent a prevalent mode of microbial life in natural, industrial and hospital settings . The cells of a microorganism growing in a biofilm are physiologically distinct from planktonic cells of the same organism, which by contrast, are single-cells that may float or swim in a liquid medium. Microbes form a biofilm in response to many factors, which may include cellular recognition of specific or non-specific attachment sites on a surface, nutritional cues, or in some cases, by exposure of planktonic cells to sub-inhibitory concentrations of antibiotics . When a cell switches to the biofilm mode of growth, it undergoes a phenotypic shift in behavior in which large suites of genes are differentially regulated .

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