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  The physics of biofilms—an introduction.

Mazza, M. G. (2016). The physics of biofilms—an introduction. Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 49(20): 203001. doi:10.1088/0022-3727/49/20/203001.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002A-38D1-4 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-4045-B
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Mazza, Marco G.1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Group Non-equilibrium soft matter, Department of Dynamics of Complex Fluids, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society, ou_2063308              

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 Abstract: Biofilms are complex, self-organized consortia of microorganisms that produce a functional, protective matrix of biomolecules. Physically, the structure of a biofilm can be described as an entangled polymer network which grows and changes under the effect of gradients of nutrients, cell differentiation, quorum sensing, bacterial motion, and interaction with the environment. Its development is complex, and constantly adapting to environmental stimuli. Here, we review the fundamental physical processes that govern the inception, growth and development of a biofilm. Two important mechanisms guide the initial phase in a biofilm life-cycle: (i) the cell motility near or at a solid interface, and (ii) the cellular adhesion. Both processes are crucial for initiating the colony and for ensuring its stability. A mature biofilm behaves as a viscoelastic fluid with a complex, history-dependent dynamics. We discuss progress and challenges in the determination of its physical properties. Experimental and theoretical methods are now available that aim at integrating the biofilm ’ s hierarchy of interactions, and the heterogeneity of composition and spatial structures. We also discuss important directions in which future work should be directed.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2016-04-182016-05-25
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
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 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1088/0022-3727/49/20/203001
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Title: Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: -
Pages: 24 Volume / Issue: 49 (20) Sequence Number: 203001 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 0022-3727