Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 263171
Loughborough University

Centre for Biological Engineering

Biofilms and social microbiology

Plasma, petri dish

This project aimed at understanding multi-species biofilms, synergistic and antagonistic effects in them, and biofilm adaptation to different external stimuli. The project comprised experimental and computational studies looking into biofilm growth and biofilm resistance to gas plasmas, a promising new sterilisation technology.

The bactericidal properties of plasmas are now well established but most studies have focused on optimizing plasma treatments for killing single organisms grown in ideal laboratory conditions. This project aimed at extending the existing knowledge by assessing the bactericidal properties of plasmas against multi-species biofilms, a more realistic scenario.

Since different organisms are known to have different resistance to plasma treatments, the biofilm composition is expected to change during the exposure to plasma. Unexplored situations will arise when the intensity of the treatment is sublethal for some of the species. Would killing some species provide a better environment for more dangerous species to grow? How can we prevent this from happening?

Funding bodies

Project dates / duration

2008 - 2011

Project team


Dr Felipe Iza: F.Iza@lboro.ac.uk, 01509 227077

Project outputs / results

7th Industrial Simulation Conference, Loughborough, UK (2009).

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State-of-the-art facility

The facility is made up of a suite of Class 2 laboratories for cell growth, a bioelectrical facility and an analytical suite to service all laboratories.

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