Current Oral Health Reports

, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 36–44 | Cite as

Polymicrobial Biofilm Studies: from Basic Science to Biofilm Control

  • Hubertine ME Willems
  • Zhenbo Xu
  • Brian M PetersEmail author
Microbiology (M Klein, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Microbiology


Microbes rarely exist as single species planktonic forms as they have been commonly studied in the laboratory. Instead, the vast majority exists as part of complex polymicrobial biofilm communities attached to host and environmental surfaces. The oral cavity represents one of the most diverse and well-studied polymicrobial consortia. Despite a burgeoning field of mechanistic biofilm research within the past decades, our understanding of interactions that occur between microbial members within oral biofilms is still limited. Thus, the primary objective of this review is to focus on polymicrobial biofilm formation, microbial interactions and signaling events that mediate oral biofilm development, consequences of oral hygiene on both local and systemic disease, and potential therapeutic strategies to limit oral dysbiosis.


Polymicrobial Multi-species Biofilm Microbiome Oral health Quorum sensing 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Hubertine ME Willems, Zhenbo Xu, and Brian M Peters declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hubertine ME Willems
    • 1
  • Zhenbo Xu
    • 3
  • Brian M Peters
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Pharmacy, College of PharmacyUniversity of Tennessee Health Sciences CenterMemphisUSA
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and BiochemistryUniversity of Tennessee Health Sciences CenterMemphisUSA
  3. 3.College of Light Industry and Food SciencesSouth China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina

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