skip to main content

SciTech ConnectSciTech Connect

Title: A method for rapid quantitative assessment of biofilms with biomolecular staining and image analysis

Here, the accumulation of bacteria in surface attached biofilms, or biofouling, can be detrimental to human health, dental hygiene, and many industrial processes. A critical need in identifying and preventing the deleterious effects of biofilms is the ability to observe and quantify their development. Analytical methods capable of assessing early stage fouling are cumbersome or lab-confined, subjective, and qualitative. Herein, a novel photographic method is described that uses biomolecular staining and image analysis to enhance contrast of early stage biofouling. A robust algorithm was developed to objectively and quantitatively measure surface accumulation of Pseudomonas putida from photographs and results were compared to independent measurements of cell density. Results from image analysis quantified biofilm growth intensity accurately and with approximately the same precision of the more laborious cell counting method. This simple method for early stage biofilm detection enables quantifiable measurement of surface fouling and is flexible enough to be applied from the laboratory to the field. Broad spectrum staining highlights fouling biomass, photography quickly captures a large area of interest, and image analysis rapidly quantifies fouling in the image.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  2. Univ. of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 1618-2642; 48240; 48669
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 408; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 1618-2642
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
biofilm; biofouling; image analysis; biomolecular stain; photogrammetry; biofilm growth intensity; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory