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Consider the following statements:

  1. Biofilms can form on medical implants within human tissues.
  2. Biofilms can form on food and food processing surfaces.
  3. Biofilms can exhibit antibiotic resistance.

Which of the statements given above are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation

The correct answer is (d) 1, 2, and 3. All the statements given above are correct. Here’s an explanation for each statement:

  1. Biofilms can form on medical implants within human tissues: Biofilms can develop on various medical devices and implants, such as urinary and venous catheters, breast implants, and pacemakers. The accumulation of microorganisms on implants and their dispersal in the body can lead to chronic inflammation, often necessitating the removal of the infected device.
  2. Biofilms can form on food and food processing surfaces: Biofilms can form quickly in food industry environments. They can develop on food matrixes and along food industry infrastructures, posing a significant challenge for food industries. Examples of microorganisms that can form biofilms in the food industry include bacteria and fungi.
  3. Biofilms can exhibit antibiotic resistance: Biofilms show increased tolerance to antibiotics and disinfectant chemicals, as well as resisting phagocytosis and other components of the body’s defense system. The increased antibiotic resistance of biofilms is due to various factors, such as limited diffusion of antimicrobial agents through the biofilm matrix, communication of the antimicrobial agents with the biofilm matrix, enzyme-mediated resistance, and levels of antibiotic resistance genes.

Learn more

  • Biofilms are structured communities of microorganisms that adhere to each other on living or non-living surfaces within a self-produced matrix of extracellular polymeric substances.
  • They can form on virtually all surfaces immersed in a natural aqueous environment, such as water pipes, living tissue, tooth surfaces, and implanted medical devices.
  • Biofilms exhibit increased tolerance to antibiotics and disinfectant chemicals, making them difficult to eradicate.
  • In the food industry, biofilms can lead to cross-contamination, affecting the cleaning and disinfection dynamics.
  • In healthcare, biofilms can cause chronic infections and complications related to medical implants.
  • Preventing and treating biofilms often requires a combination of aggressive antibiotic prophylaxis or therapy and chronic suppressive therapy.

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