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Year : 2006  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 303

Detection of biofilm

Department of Microbiology, Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Kolkata -700 020, India

Date of Submission30-Apr-2006
Date of Acceptance26-May-2006

Correspondence Address:
P K Maiti
Department of Microbiology, Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Kolkata -700 020
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0255-0857.29398

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How to cite this article:
Maiti P K. Detection of biofilm. Indian J Med Microbiol 2006;24:303

How to cite this URL:
Maiti P K. Detection of biofilm. Indian J Med Microbiol [serial online] 2006 [cited 2020 Oct 20];24:303. Available from:

Dear Editor,

With great interest I went through the article of Mathur and his co-workers regarding detection of biofilm formation.[1] Probably the methods applied in this study are better indicator of bacterial adhesion, not the potentiality for their biofilm formation. Initial adherence of most S. epidermidis strains to plastic surface is mostly mediated by a capsular polysaccharide adhesion called PS/A and subsequent adhesion between cells is mediated by polysaccharide intercellular adhesion or PIA, which is structurally different to that of PS/A and forms the polysaccharide matrix of biofilm.[2] Slime or glycocalyx forms matrix surrounding each of the individual cells as its outermost component. However, exopolysaccarides of biofilms are produced under selective pressures and give biofilms structural complexities which are controlled by diffusible chemical signals as the collective effort (quorum sensing) of the cells within biofilms. Therefore, presence within biofilm at micro level is not homogenous.[3]

Extent of initial adhesion may also differ with adherence property of container, duration and number of bacteria coming in contact with test surface as well as with the fluid turbulence of test media. Consequently, the results of the tests to detect slime production by tissue culture plate method and tube method can only be compared when both types of test containers will be made up of same material and when composition of media, initial bacterial concentration and incubation period will be identical. Probably results after 24 hours of incubation will represent only initial adhesion of bacteria to the test surface which may include some strains of non-biofilm producers. Because all biofilm formation starts with surface adhesion, the screening tests only reliably detect non-biofilm producers which also fail to produce slime.

 ~ References Top

1.Mathur T, Singhal S, Khan S, Upadhyay DJ, Fatma T, Rattan A. Detection of biofilm formation among the clinical isolates of Staphylococci: An evaluation of three different screening methods. Indian J Med Microbiol 2006; 24 :25-9.  Back to cited text no. 1  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]
2.Koneman's Color Atlas and Textbook of Diagnostic Microbiology, 6th ed. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins: Philadelphia; 2006. p. 638.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.Karen TE, Hilary ML. Biofilm and Biofouling. In : Encyclopedia of Microbiology, Vol.1. 2nd ed. Leederberg J, editor. Academic Press: New York; 2000. p. 478-85.  Back to cited text no. 3    

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