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Issue 24, 2016
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Through thick and thin: a microfluidic approach for continuous measurements of biofilm viscosity and the effect of ionic strength

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Abstract

Continuous, non-intrusive measurements of time-varying viscosity of Pseudomonas sp. biofilms are made using a microfluidic method that combines video tracking with a semi-empirical viscous flow model. The approach uses measured velocity and height of tracked biofilm segments, which move under the constant laminar flow of a nutrient solution. Following a low viscosity growth stage, rapid thickening was observed. During this stage, viscosity increased by over an order of magnitude in less than ten hours. The technique was also demonstrated as a promising platform for parallel experiments by subjecting multiple biofilm-laden microchannels to nutrient solutions containing NaCl in the range of 0 to 34 mM. Preliminary data suggest a strong relationship between ionic strength and biofilm properties, such as average viscosity and rapid thickening onset time. The technique opens the way for a combinatorial approach to study the response of biofilm viscosity under well-controlled physical, chemical and biological growth conditions.

Graphical abstract: Through thick and thin: a microfluidic approach for continuous measurements of biofilm viscosity and the effect of ionic strength

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
01 Sep 2016
Accepted
27 Oct 2016
First published
28 Oct 2016

Lab Chip, 2016,16, 4710-4717
Article type
Paper

Through thick and thin: a microfluidic approach for continuous measurements of biofilm viscosity and the effect of ionic strength

F. Paquet-Mercier, M. Parvinzadeh Gashti, J. Bellavance, S. M. Taghavi and J. Greener, Lab Chip, 2016, 16, 4710
DOI: 10.1039/C6LC01101B

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