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Towards standardized mechanical characterization of microbial biofilms: analysis and critical review

Abstract : Developing reliable anti-biofilm strategies or efficient biofilm-based bioprocesses strongly depends on having a clear understanding of the mechanisms underlying biofilm development, and knowledge of the relevant mechanical parameters describing microbial biofilm behavior. Many varied mechanical testing methods are available to assess these parameters. The mechanical properties thus identified can then be used to compare protocols such as antibiotic screening. However, the lack of standardization in both mechanical testing and the associated identification methods for a given microbiological goal remains a blind spot in the biofilm community. The pursuit of standardization is problematic, as biofilms are living structures, i.e., both complex and dynamic. Here, we review the main available methods for characterizing the mechanical properties of biofilms through the lens of the relationship linking experimental testing to the identification of mechanical parameters. We propose guidelines for characterizing biofilms according to microbiological objectives that will help the reader choose an appropriate test and a relevant identification method for measuring any given mechanical parameter. The use of a common methodology for the mechanical characterization of biofilms will enable reliable analysis and comparison of microbiological protocols needed for improvement of engineering process and screening.
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Contributor : Migration Irstea Publications <>
Submitted on : Saturday, May 16, 2020 - 4:59:32 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, September 7, 2021 - 3:54:57 PM

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H. Boudarel, Jean-Denis Mathias, B. Blaysat, M. Grédiac. Towards standardized mechanical characterization of microbial biofilms: analysis and critical review. npj Biofilms and Microbiomes, [London?]: Springer Nature published in partnership with Nanyang Technological University, 2018, 4 (1), ⟨10.1038/s41522-018-0062-5⟩. ⟨hal-02608821⟩



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