What is Biofilm?

They are substances that are formed when bacteria or fungi tries to anchor on a surface with a sticky substance and also serves as its protection from its environment and golf courses. This substance can make these micro-organisms more immune to any antibiotic or antimicrobial agents. It can be secreted into any surface. It becomes more horrendous to ponder that they can secrete this substance on living and non-living objects, like the nails, teeth, skin, and even on the dirty corners of our own home like our pipes, water, and air filters. It can even stay on hospital devices and food processing materials.

What makes this dangerous?

Infections related to biofilm are a challenge because it is difficult to treat it. They even cause chronic and recurring ailments in human beings. According to the National Institute of Health in the USA, about 80% of all infections caused by human bacteria are brought on by biofilms. Most of these manifest on several health concerns like difficulties in curing chronic wounds, periodontal health conditions, infections brought by unsterilized medical equipment, food safety issues, inflammations on the skin, and infections that are Hospital-Acquired (HAI).

The Beginning on Biofilm Studies

Although there were many pieces of research related to biofilms and biofilm production and effects to human health, it was only in the ’90s that it was formally identified. The study has rapidly progressed in the past decade and has contributed to a heightened understanding of biofilm’s role in antimicrobial resistance and infection.

How are Biofilms Developed?

Stage one is when they begin to anchor to the host’s surface through simple adhesion. This is also the weakest stage in biofilm infection and infestation and it can be repelled or removed through antimicrobial agents.

Stage two is when biofilms produce a stickier, stronger slime that holds greatly on surface and weather shear forces.

Stage three and four is Maturation in two stages. First is when biofilms are fully formed and become a multi-layered cluster. Second is the immense growth of biofilms and becomes more resistant to any antibiotic and antimicrobial agents.

The last stage is dispersing the planktonic bacteria that spreads itself on the host’s surface.