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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Adhesion of Staphylococcus epidermidis and transposon mutant strains to hydrophobic polyethylene.

Staphylococcus epidermidis capsular polysaccharide adhesin (PS/A) and slime were studied as possible mediators of bacterial adhesion to NHLBI polyethylene (PE) under dynamic flow. This putative interaction was examined by quantifying the adhesion of M187 (PS/A+, slime+) parent strain and isogenic transposon mutant strain sn3 (PS/A-, slime-) to polyethylene (PE) under a range of physiologic shear stress conditions in both phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) and 1% platelet poor plasma (PPP). No significant differences in adhesion were noted between the M187 and sn3 strains in either test medium. However, adhesion of both strains in 1% PPP was decreased 75-95% compared to adhesion in PBS. In PBS, adhesion was shear stress dependent from 0-15 dyne/cm2, after which adhesion was comparatively shear stress independent. Adhesion in 1% PPP was independent of shear stress. Epifluorescent imaging of both strains labeled for slime confirmed the presence of slime on the surface of M187 and suggested that PS/A and slime promote the formation of large aggregates, as aggregates were totally absent in the images of the sn3 strain. The results suggest that PS/A and slime do not mediate S. epidermidis adhesion to bare PE or PE with adsorbed plasma proteins, but may be necessary for intercellular adhesion, which is important for biofilm formation.[1]


  1. Adhesion of Staphylococcus epidermidis and transposon mutant strains to hydrophobic polyethylene. Higashi, J.M., Wang, I.W., Shlaes, D.M., Anderson, J.M., Marchant, R.E. J. Biomed. Mater. Res. (1998) [Pubmed]
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