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Science

Biofilms are a huge health burden in infections causing about 80% of all infections according to NIH research. Such biofilms remain completely undetected by most modern culture methods, as only < 1% of microorganisms can be cultured.

Uncover the Importance of Biofilms in Infections

The MiDOG® All-in-One Microbial Test provides unique DNA preservation and extraction technologies that capture the DNA of all microorganisms present in biofilms. Mechanical forces break down the biofilms for extraction of the DNA from all microorganisms. Ultra-deep Next-Generation DNA Sequencing and bioinformatic analysis identify all organisms within biofilms.

Image source: Adapted from Omar, et al. 2017 Microorganisms

Biofilms are living, three-dimensional structures formed by a multispecies consortia of microorganisms which are encased in a self-secreted extracellular matrix. This matrix consists of polysaccharides, proteins, and DNA. Within biofilms, bacteria can further protect themselves from disturbances in their environment and microorganisms within biofilms are generally less susceptible to antibiotics.

A biofilm’s extraordinary tolerance to antimicrobial compounds is derived from several factors,including high genetic and physiologic diversity. Some members of a biofilm may protect others from antimicrobial compounds through the expression of efflux pumps that expel antibiotics from cells. This allows the community to grow even in the presence of a drug. The biofilm’s extracellular matrix is negatively charged and can bind to positively charged antimicrobials, blocking them from reaching cells within the colony. These and other factors cause biofilms, especially in the case of pathogenic bacteria, to exhibit increased virulence.