Indexed on: 13 Dec '12Published on: 13 Dec '12Published in: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Listeriosis is a rare, serious, and mainly food-borne infection caused by the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. This food-borne infection primarily affects pregnant women and immunologically compromised individuals. L. monocytogenes is recognized as a problem for the food industry, mainly due to its environmental persistence, attributed in part to its ability to form biofilms. Biofilms are microbial communities adhered to biotic or abiotic surfaces coated by self-produced extracellular polymers. These structures confer protection to bacterial cells and decrease the efficiency of cleaning and disinfection procedures. This article presents a brief review of current perspectives on the formation of biofilms, with emphasis on L. monocytogenes, highlighting the importance of cell-to-cell communication and structural composition of the microbial communities. The techniques currently used to study biofilms and the need to develop new strategies for the prevention and control of biofilm-forming pathogens are also discussed.