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Materials 2016, 9(9), 770; doi:10.3390/ma9090770

Flow Chamber System for the Statistical Evaluation of Bacterial Colonization on Materials

Department 4, Materials and the Environment, Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM), Berlin 12205, Germany
Helmholtz Zentrum München, Institute of Computational Biology, Neuherberg 85764, Germany
Department of Biology, Chemistry and Pharmacy, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin 14195, Germany
Department of Earth Sciences, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin 14195, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Qun Ren
Received: 14 July 2016 / Revised: 1 September 2016 / Accepted: 2 September 2016 / Published: 10 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Biointerfaces)
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Biofilm formation on materials leads to high costs in industrial processes, as well as in medical applications. This fact has stimulated interest in the development of new materials with improved surfaces to reduce bacterial colonization. Standardized tests relying on statistical evidence are indispensable to evaluate the quality and safety of these new materials. We describe here a flow chamber system for biofilm cultivation under controlled conditions with a total capacity for testing up to 32 samples in parallel. In order to quantify the surface colonization, bacterial cells were DAPI (4`,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole)-stained and examined with epifluorescence microscopy. More than 100 images of each sample were automatically taken and the surface coverage was estimated using the free open source software g’mic, followed by a precise statistical evaluation. Overview images of all gathered pictures were generated to dissect the colonization characteristics of the selected model organism Escherichia coli W3310 on different materials (glass and implant steel). With our approach, differences in bacterial colonization on different materials can be quantified in a statistically validated manner. This reliable test procedure will support the design of improved materials for medical, industrial, and environmental (subaquatic or subaerial) applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: subaerial and subaquatic biofilm; Escherichia coli; image analysis; microscopy; biofilm reactor; biofouling subaerial and subaquatic biofilm; Escherichia coli; image analysis; microscopy; biofilm reactor; biofouling

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Menzel, F.; Conradi, B.; Rodenacker, K.; Gorbushina, A.A.; Schwibbert, K. Flow Chamber System for the Statistical Evaluation of Bacterial Colonization on Materials. Materials 2016, 9, 770.

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