Chapter

Progress in Drug Research / Fortschritte der Arzneimittelforschung / Progrès des recherches pharmaceutiques

Volume 37 of the series Progress in Drug Research / Fortschritte der Arzneimittelforschung / Progrès des recherches pharmaceutiques pp 91-105

Bacterial resistance to antibiotics: The role of biofilms

  • Brian D. HoyleAffiliated withBiofilm Group, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary
  • , J. William CostertonAffiliated withBiofilm Group, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access

Summary

Bacteria adhere to natural and synthetic, medically important surfaces within an extracellular polymer generically termed the glycocalyx. This quasi-structure is a biofilm. The enhanced antibiotic resistance of biofilm bacteria, relative to floating (planktonic) bacteria, encourages the establishment of chronic bacterial infections. Resistance mechanisms include the hinderance of antibiotic diffusion by the glycocalyx, the physiology of the bacteria and the environment conditions of the niche in which the biofilm resides.