Cold Plasmas for Biofilm Control: Opportunities and Challenges

Brendan F. Gilmore*, Padrig B. Flynn, Séamus O'Brien, Noreen Hickok, Theresa Freeman, Paula Bourke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)


Bacterial biofilm infections account for a major proportion of chronic and medical device associated infections in humans, yet our ability to control them is compromised by their inherent tolerance to antimicrobial agents. Cold atmospheric plasma (CAP) represents a promising therapeutic option. CAP treatment of microbial biofilms represents the convergence of two complex phenomena: the production of a chemically diverse mixture of reactive species and intermediates, and their interaction with a heterogeneous 3D interface created by the biofilm extracellular polymeric matrix. Therefore, understanding these interactions and physiological responses to CAP exposure are central to effective management of infectious biofilms. We review the unique opportunities and challenges for translating CAP to the management of biofilms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)627-638
JournalTrends in Biotechnology
Issue number6
Early online date02 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering


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