The unique strength of the Flinders Biofilm Research and Innovation Consortium is the combination of multidisciplinary expertise to develop innovative solutions and provide better controls of problematic biofilms. Our knowledge and expertise is relevant to many industries such as desalination and membranes, medical implants, beverage and food, water and wastewater, renewable energy, biosecurity, maritime and mining. The consortium builds on the strong biofilm research being done at the Flinders Institute for NanoScale Science and Technology.
Biofilms grow on all surfaces and environments, from catheters to drinking water pipes and tankships. They are complex organisations of cells that grow on both living and inert surfaces and are both viscous and elastic in nature. They can be made up of a single species or comprise several species of different types of microorganisms. Biofilm attachment and development cannot be prevented completely thus they cost billions each year to those attempting to eradicate them. In some instances, biofilms also pose a threat as they can facilitate the attachment of organisms that cause infections or that present risks to Australia's marine biosecurity.
Biofilms are 3D structures, made of a combination of different microbial species embedded within a protective extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) matrix. Their matrix has proven a highly effective survival strategy and protection means against biocides, antifungal and antibacterial treatments.
We are working with industries to develop innovative solutions that meet their needs and alleviate their biofilm related problems.