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Nanoscale Forces at the Heart of Staphylococcus Infections

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2011

Ruchirej Yongsunthon
Affiliation:
yongsuntr@Corning.com, Corning Incorporated, Molecular Spectroscopy and Separations, Corning Incorporated, SP-FR-01, R1S12L/23L, Corning, NY 14831, Corning, NY, 14831, United States
Francis Paul Vellano
Affiliation:
fvellano@buffalo.edu, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 43210, United States
Brian H. Lower
Affiliation:
brian.lower@pnl.gov, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, 99352, United States
Vance G. Fowler
Affiliation:
fowle003@mc.duke.edu, Duke University, Durham, NC, 27710, United States
Emily Alexander
Affiliation:
emily.alexander@duke.edu, Duke University, Durham, NC, 27710, United States
Steven K. Lower
Affiliation:
lower.9@osu.edu, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 43210, United States
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Abstract

Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most frequently isolated bacteria from infected medical implants. S. aureus has the capacity to adhere to the surface of an implant where it forms a biofilm. We used atomic force microscopy to probe binding forces between a fibronectin-coated tip and isolates of S. aureus, which were obtained from either patients with infected prostheses or healthy humans. A unique force-signature was observed for binding events between the tip and the cells. There is a strong distinction (p=0.01) in the binding force-signature observed for S. aureus isolated from the infected vs. healthy populations. This observation suggests a fundamental correlation between nanometer scale binding forces and the clinical outcome of patients with implanted medical devices.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2008

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