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Viscoelastic fluid description of bacterial biofilm material properties

Record type: Article

A mathematical model describing the constitutive properties of biofilms is required for predicting biofilm deformation, failure, and detachment in response to mechanical forces. Laboratory observations indicate that biofilms are viscoelastic materials. Likewise, current knowledge of biofilm internal structure suggests modeling biofilms as associated polymer viscoelastic systems. Supporting experimental results and a system of viscoelastic fluid equations with a linear Jeffreys viscoelastic stress-strain law are presented here. This system of equations is based on elements of associated polymer physics and is also consistent with presented and previous experimental results. A number of predictions can be made. One particularly interesting result is the prediction of an elastic relaxation time on the order of a few minutes-biofilm disturbances on shorter time scales produce an elastic response, biofilm disturbances on longer time scales result in viscous flow, i.e., nonreversible biofilm deformation. Although not previously recognized, evidence of this phenomenon is in fact present in recent experimental results.

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Citation

Klapper, I., Rupp, C.J., Cargo, R., Purvedorj, B. and Stoodley, P. (2002) Viscoelastic fluid description of bacterial biofilm material properties Biotechnology and Bioengineering, 80, (3), pp. 289-296. (doi:10.1002/bit.10376).

More information

Published date: 5 November 2002
Organisations: Engineering Mats & Surface Engineerg Gp

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 157141
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/157141
ISSN: 0006-3592
PURE UUID: 39237bf7-a054-416d-a031-2a41a654f171

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 09 Jun 2010 14:04
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 12:41

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Contributors

Author: I. Klapper
Author: C.J. Rupp
Author: R. Cargo
Author: B. Purvedorj
Author: P. Stoodley

University divisions


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