Review Article

Emerging Concept and Technology on Mycobacterial Biofilm

Author: Virendra Kumar

Bacteria have a natural propensity to grow as sessile, matrixencapsulated, multicellular communities called biofilms. Many Mycobacteria can develop biofilm, a multicellular structure largely combining bacteria and their Extracellular Polymeric Substances (EPS). Biofilms proceeds through genetically programmed, distinct developmental stages signalled by intricate networks of communication among the constituent population and their environment. Biofilmrelevant infections are more persistent, resistant to most antibiotics, and more recalcitrant to host immunity. Non Tuberculous Mycobacteria (NTM) are emergent pathogens whose importance in human health has been growing. Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis, can develop biofilm, though whether M. tuberculosis can form biofilm within tuberculosis patients has yet to be determined. Most notable among these is an extraordinary level of tolerance to a variety of environmental stresses, including antibiotics. Although mycobacteria have long been observed to spontaneously form complex multicellular structures in vitro, it has only recently become apparent that these structures are not only formed through dedicated genetic pathways but are also tolerant to antibiotics. In this article, we review the recent advances in the understanding of mycobacterial biofilms in vitro. We further consider the possible linkage between biofilm-like lifestyles and characteristic persistence of mycobacterial infections against hostdefence mechanisms as well as antibiotics