eCM (Eur Cell Mater / e Cells & Materials) Not-for-profit Open Access
Created by Scientists, for Scientists
 ISSN:1473-2262         NLM:100973416 (link)         DOI:10.22203/eCM

2004   Volume No 8 - pages 37-57

Title: Concise review of mechanisms of bacterial adhesion to biomaterials and of techniques used in estimating bacteria-material interactions

Authors: M. Katsikogianni and Y.F. Missirlis

Address: Laboratory of Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Patras, Patras, Greece

E-mail: misirlis at

Key Words: Bacterial adhesion, surface chemistry, surface topography, biomaterial-bacterial interactions, radial flow device.

Publication date: December 7th 2004

Abstract: This article reviews the mechanisms of bacterial adhesion to biomaterial surfaces, the factors affecting the adhesion, the techniques used in estimating bacteria–material interactions and the models that have been developed in order to predict adhesion. The process of bacterial adhesion includes an initial physicochemical interaction phase and a late molecular and cellular one. It is a complicated process influenced by many factors, including the bacterial properties, the material surface characteristics, the environmental factors, such as the presence of serum proteins and the associated flow conditions. Two categories of techniques used in estimating bacteria–material interactions are described: those that utilize fluid flowing against the adhered bacteria and counting the percentage of bacteria that detach, and those that manipulate single bacteria in various configurations which lend themselves to more specific force application and provide the basis for theoretical analysis of the receptor–ligand interactions. The theories that are reviewed are the Derjaguin-Landau-
Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) theory, the thermodynamic approach and the extended DLVO theory. Over the years, significant work has been done to investigate the process of bacterial adhesion to biomaterial surfaces, however a lot of questions still remain unanswered.

Article download: Pages 37-57. (PDF file)
DOI: 10.22203/eCM.v008a05