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  • 200020003011812800800626183400400206876PublicAssets/6518A biofilm is a highly organized community of microorganisms that develops naturally on certain surfaces. These communities are common in natural environments and generally do not pose any danger to humans. Many microbes in biofilms have a positive impact on the planet and our societies. Biofilms can be helpful in treatment of wastewater, for example. This dime-sized biofilm, however, was formed by the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Under some conditions, this bacterium can infect wounds that are caused by severe burns. The bacterial cells release a variety of materials to form an extracellular matrix, which is stained red in this photograph. The matrix holds the biofilm together and protects the bacteria from antibiotics and the immune system. A biofilm is a highly organized community of microorganisms that develops naturally on certain surfaces. These communities are common in natural environments and generally do not pose any danger to humans. Many microbes in biofilms have a positive impact on the planet and our societies. Biofilms can be helpful in treatment of wastewater, for example. This dime-sized biofilm, however, was formed by the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Under some conditions, this bacterium can infect wounds that are caused by severe burns. The bacterial cells release a variety of materials to form an extracellular matrix, which is stained red in this photograph. The matrix holds the biofilm together and protects the bacteria from antibiotics and the immune system. Scott Chimileski, Ph.D., and Roberto Kolter, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School.Scott Chimileski, Ph.D., and Roberto Kolter, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School.Photograph

    Topic Tags:

    Cell Biology

    Biofilm formed by a pathogen

    A biofilm is a highly organized community of microorganisms that develops naturally on certain surfaces. These communities are common in natural environments and generally do not pose any danger to humans. Many microbes in biofilms have a positive impact on the planet and our societies. Biofilms can be helpful in treatment of wastewater, for example. This dime-sized biofilm, however, was formed by the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Under some conditions, this bacterium can infect wounds that are caused by severe burns. The bacterial cells release a variety of materials to form an extracellular matrix, which is stained red in this photograph. The matrix holds the biofilm together and protects the bacteria from antibiotics and the immune system. A biofilm is a highly organized community of microorganisms that develops naturally on certain surfaces. These communities are common in natural environments and generally do not pose any danger to humans. Many microbes in biofilms have a positive impact on the planet and our societies. Biofilms can be helpful in treatment of wastewater, for example. This dime-sized biofilm, however, was formed by the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Under some conditions, this bacterium can infect wounds that are caused by severe burns. The bacterial cells release a variety of materials to form an extracellular matrix, which is stained red in this photograph. The matrix holds the biofilm together and protects the bacteria from antibiotics and the immune system.

    Source

    Scott Chimileski, Ph.D., and Roberto Kolter, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School.

    Credit Line

    Scott Chimileski, Ph.D., and Roberto Kolter, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School.

    Record Type

    Photograph

    ID

    6518

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