Measurement of bacterial growth rates on polymers

Measurement of bacterial growth rates on polymers

Measurement of bacterial growth rates on polymers

Abstract

A video microscope system and a mathematical model were developed to observe and model the early stage of bacterial growth on polymer surfaces. Glass slides were coated with polyorthoester, poly(L-lactic acid), and polysulfone, and inserted into a laminar flow cell to expose them to bacterialcultures of Staphylococcus epidermidis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, or Escherichia coli. The free energy of adhesion (delta Fadh) was determined from contact-angle measurements. The microscopic observations along with the mathematical model allowed measurement of the rates of adhesion, release, and growth. The growth rate of P. aeruginosa on the various surfaces correlated to the delta Fadh. The growth rates of all species on all of the surfaces were slower than the growth rates of the bacteria in suspension. The mathematical model is valid for early growth before the bacteria form a complete monolayer, and is useful in predicting and modeling early growth of bacteria on implanted biomaterials.

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