Clostridium difficile Biofilm

  • Claudia Vuotto
  • Gianfranco Donelli
  • Anthony Buckley
  • Caroline Chilton
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1050)


Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is an important healthcare-associated disease worldwide, mainly occurring after antimicrobial therapy. Antibiotics administered to treat a number of infections can promote C. difficile colonization of the gastrointestinal tract and, thus, CDI. A rise in multidrug resistant clinical isolates to multiple antibiotics and their reduced susceptibility to the most commonly used antibiotic molecules have made the treatment of CDI more complicated, allowing the persistence of C. difficile in the intestinal environment.

Gut colonization and biofilm formation have been suggested to contribute to the pathogenesis and persistence of C. difficile. In fact, biofilm growth is considered as a serious threat because of the related increase in bacterial resistance that makes antibiotic therapy often ineffective. However, although the involvement of the C. difficile biofilm in the pathogenesis and recurrence of CDI is attracting more and more interest, the mechanisms underlying biofilm formation of C. difficile as well as the role of biofilm in CDI have not been extensively described.

Findings on C. difficile biofilm, possible implications in CDI pathogenesis and treatment, efficacy of currently available antibiotics in treating biofilm-forming C. difficile strains, and some antimicrobial alternatives under investigation will be discussed here.


Biofilm Clostridium difficile Genetic factors EPS matrix Adhesion 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudia Vuotto
    • 1
  • Gianfranco Donelli
    • 1
  • Anthony Buckley
    • 2
  • Caroline Chilton
    • 2
  1. 1.Microbial Biofilm LaboratoryIRCCS Fondazione Santa LuciaRomeItaly
  2. 2.Healthcare Associated Infection Research Group, Section of Molecular Gastroenterology, Institute for Biomedical and Clinical SciencesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

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