Bacterial biofilm formation and immune evasion mechanisms

Jessica Snowden

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter introduces the key concepts in biofilm formation and the current understanding of the complex and impaired interactions between the immune system and these bacterial communities. Bacterial biofilms are known to play an important role in the pathophysiology of many infectious diseases, including device-associated infections, chronic otitis media and sinusitis, dental disease and colonization in the lungs of cystic fibrosis patients. Biofilm formation has been described in many different strains of bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, and others. There are three stages that characterize biofilm formation: attachment, proliferation, and dispersal. Neutrophils also play an important role in the containment of biofilm infections and production of reactive oxygen species as a means of combatting these infections. Finally, the chapter reviews the current understanding of innate and adaptive immune responses to infection, as well as other cell types with immune and non-immune functions, such as fibroblasts and epithelial cells, that may play a role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Human Microbiota and Chronic Disease
Subtitle of host publicationDysbiosis as a Cause of Human Pathology
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781118982907
ISBN (Print)9781118982877
StatePublished - Sep 22 2016


  • Adaptive immune responses
  • Bacterial biofilm formation
  • Bacterial communities
  • Biofilm immune evasion strategies
  • Biofilm therapeutics
  • Chronic disease
  • Device-associated biofilm infections
  • Innate immune responses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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