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Real time monitoring of biofilm formation on coated medical devices for the reduction and interception of bacterial infections


Yasin Kurmoo

Daniel Harvey

Professor of Molecular Microbiology

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Professor of Photonics Instrumentation


Real time monitoring of bacterial attachment to medical devices provides opportunities to detect early biofilm formation and instigate appropriate interventions before infection develops. This study utilises long period grating (LPG) optical fibre sensors, incorporated into the lumen of endotracheal tubes (ETTs), to monitor in real time, Pseudomonas aeruginosa surface colonisation and biofilm formation. The wavelength shift of LPG attenuation bands was monitored for 24 h and compared with biofilm biomass, quantified using confocal fluorescence microscopy imaging. Biofilm formation was compared on uncoated ETTs and optical fibres, and on a biofilm resistant acrylate polymer, after challenge in an artificial sputum or minimal growth medium (RPMI-1640). The LPG sensor was able to detect a biofilm biomass as low as 81 µg/cm 2 , by comparison with the confocal image quantification. An empirical exponential function was found to the link optical attenuation wavelength shift with the inverse of the biofilm biomass, allowing quantification of biofouling from the spectral response. Quantification from the sensor allows infection interception and early device removal, to reduce, for example, the risk of ventilator associated pneumonia.


Kurmoo, Y., Hook, A. L., Harvey, D., Dubern, J., Williams, P., Morgan, S. P., …Alexander, M. R. (2020). Real time monitoring of biofilm formation on coated medical devices for the reduction and interception of bacterial infections. Biomaterials Science, 8(5), 1464-1477.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 3, 2019
Online Publication Date Jan 21, 2020
Publication Date Mar 7, 2020
Deposit Date Feb 25, 2020
Journal Biomaterials Science
Electronic ISSN 2047-4849
Publisher Royal Society of Chemistry
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Issue 5
Pages 1464-1477
Keywords Real time monitoring; Biofilm; Optical fibre sensors; Medical devices; Interception; Bacterial infections
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Publisher URL!divAbstract
Additional Information : This document is Similarity Check deposited; : Supplementary Information; : Yasin Kurmoo (ORCID); : Andrew L. Hook (ORCID); : Jean-Frédéric Dubern (ORCID); : Paul Williams (ORCID); : Stephen P. Morgan (ORCID); : Serhiy Korposh (ORCID); : Morgan R. Alexander (ORCID); : Morgan R. Alexander (ResearcherID); : Single-blind; : Received 6 June 2019; Accepted 3 December 2019; Accepted Manuscript published 21 January 2020; Advance Article published 22 January 2020


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