Research – Salmonella Biofilm Formation under Fluidic Shear Stress on Different Surface Materials



This study characterized biofilm formation of various Salmonella strains on common processing plant surface materials (stainless steel, concrete, rubber, polyethylene) under static and fluidic shear stress conditions. Surface-coupons were immersed in well-plates containing 1 mL of Salmonella (6 log CFU/mL) and incubated aerobically for 48 h at 37 °C in static or shear stress conditions. Biofilm density was determined using crystal violet assay, and biofilm cells were enumerated by plating on tryptic soy agar plates. Biofilms were visualized using scanning electron microscopy. Data were analyzed by SAS 9.4 at a significance level of 0.05. A surface–incubation condition interaction was observed for biofilm density (p < 0.001). On stainless steel, the OD600 was higher under shear stress than static incubation; whereas, on polyethylene, the OD600 was higher under static condition. Enumeration revealed surface–incubation condition (p = 0.024) and surface–strain (p < 0.001) interactions. Among all surface–incubation condition combinations, the biofilm cells were highest on polyethylene under fluidic shear stress (6.4 log/coupon; p < 0.001). Biofilms of S. Kentucky on polyethylene had the highest number of cells (7.80 log/coupon) compared to all other strain–surface combinations (p < 0.001). Electron microscopy revealed morphological and extracellular matrix differences between surfaces. Results indicate that Salmonella biofilm formation is influenced by serotype, surface, and fluidic shear stress.

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