What Are Biofilms?

  • A biofilm is a single- or multi-species community of microorganisms residing within a self-produced polymer matrix that attaches to the interface of a surface and a liquid.
  • A biofilm’s effects can be beneficial, neutral, or harmful to man and his environment.
  • Controlling or eliminating negative-impacting biofilms over any significant time span is extremely difficult as they can, with sufficient resources, grow at exponential rates and survive for long periods of time.
  • Naturally-occurring biofilms are multispecies, rendering chemical and antibiotic-based site targeting ineffective, except in quantities and concentrations that would result in unacceptable consequences for humans, animals, and the environment.
  • Consensus is forming that the safe control and elimination of pathogenic biofilms is critically important in all these settings.

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