Université Catholique de Louvain

Microplate readers help to fight biofilms

Wafi Siala is part of Françoise Van Bambeke’s team in the Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology laboratory at the Louvain Drug Research Institute (Université Catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium). Wafia is also an R&D scientist at One Life SA which provides products, protocols and services that enable high-level decontamination, including detection and treatment of biofilms.

Wafi’s main research topic aims to set up a pharmacodynamic model comparing antibiotic activities against biofilms and examine in parallel their effects on viability and biofilm mass. The team have compared the effects of antibiotics on bacterial viability and antibiotic penetration in the biofilm.

In their research they needed to measure biofilm production using crystal violet absorbance, a cationic dye which stains nonspecifically negatively charged biofilm constituents based on ionic interactions. They also needed to observe the bacterial viability within the biofilm using the blue-colored phenoxazin dye resazurin, which is reduced by viable bacteria to the pink, fluorescent compound resorufin1.

The team needed to perform both fluorescence and absorbance measurements, for which they had acquired two types of microplate readers; the VersaMax ELISA Absorbance Reader and the SpectraMax M3. The SpectraMax M3 allows multi-mode measurements and provides the team with greater flexibility. Another great advantage, according to Wafi, is “the large choice of microplate sizes from 6 to 384 wells which the SpectraMax M series offers”.

1Find out more about Wafi Siala’s research:

W. SIALA, S Kucharíková, A Braem, P M. Tulkens, M-P Mingeot-Leclercq, P Van Dijck and F Van Bambeke. The antifungal caspofungin increases fluoroquinolone activity against Staphyloccocus aureus biofilms by inhibiting N-acetylglucosamine transferase. Nature communications. 2016 Nov

W. SIALA, Van Bambeke F, Taresco V, Piozzi A, Francolini I. Synergistic activity between an antimicrobial polyacrylamide and daptomycin vs. Staphylococcus aureus biofilm. Pathogens and Disease. 2016 Apr

W. SIALA, Tulkens PM, Hallin M, Denis O, Van Bambeke F. Antibiotic activity against biofilms from Staphylococcus aureus clinical isolates: factors determining the activity of the investigational fluoroquinolone delafloxacin in comparison with daptomycin and vancomycin. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2014 Aug; AAC.03482-14

W. SIALA, J. Bauer, P. M. Tulkens, and F. Van Bambeke. A combined pharmacodynamic quantitative and qualitative model reveals the potent activity of daptomycin and delafloxacin against Staphylococcus aureus biofilms. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2013 Jun, 57:2726-2737

The system.