Self-organised nanoarchitecture of titanium surfaces influences the attachment of Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria
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The surface nanotopography and architecture of medical implant devices are important factors that can control the extent of bacterial attachment. The ability to prevent bacterial attachment substantially reduces the possibility of a patient receiving an implant contracting an implant-borne infection. We now demonstrated that two bacterial strains, Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, exhibited different attachment affinities towards two types of molecularly smooth titanium surfaces each possessing a different nanoarchitecture. It was found that the attachment of S. aureus cells was not restricted on surfaces that had an average roughness (S a) less than 0.5 nm. In contrast, P. aeruginosa cells were found to be unable to colonise surfaces possessing an average roughness below 1 nm, unless sharp nanoprotrusions of approximately 20 nm in size and spaced 35.0 nm apart were present. It is postulated that the enhanced attachment of P. aeruginosa onto the surfaces possessing these nanoprotrusions was facilitated by the ability of the cell membrane to stretch over the tips of the nanoprotrusions as confirmed through computer simulation, together with a concomitant increase in the level of extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) being produced by the bacterial cells.
KeywordsBacterial attachment Surface nanoarchitecture Molecularly smooth surfaces Staphylococcus aureus Pseudomonas aeruginosa
This study was supported in part by Australian Research Council through an ARC Linkage grant.
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