A modular reactor to simulate biofilm development in orthopedic materials Authors Joana Barros INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica. Liliana Grenho INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica. Cândida M. Manuel LEPABE–Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy, Dept. Chemical Engineering, University of Porto. Carla Ferreira LEPABE–Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy, Dept. Chemical Engineering, University of Porto. Luís F. Melo LEPABE–Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy, Dept. Chemical Engineering, University of Porto. Olga C. Nunes LEPABE–Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy, Dept. Chemical Engineering, University of Porto. Fernando J. Monteiro INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica. Maria P. Ferraz INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica. Keywords: orthopedic materials, orthopedic conditions, modular reactors, continuous flow, biomaterials, biofilm formation Abstract Surfaces of medical implants are generally designed to encourage soft- and/or hard-tissue adherence, eventually leading to tissue- or osseo-integration. Unfortunately, this feature may also encourage bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation. To understand the mechanisms of bone tissue infection associated with contaminated biomaterials, a detailed understanding of bacterial adhesion and subsequent biofilm formation on biomaterial surfaces is needed. In this study, a continuous-flow modular reactor composed of several modular units placed in parallel was designed to evaluate the activity of circulating bacterial suspensions and thus their predilection for biofilm formation during 72 h of incubation. Hydroxyapatite discs were placed in each modular unit and then removed at fixed times to quantify biofilm accumulation. Biofilm formation on each replicate of material, unchanged in structure, morphology, or cell density, was reproducibly observed. The modular reactor therefore proved to be a useful tool for following mature biofilm formation on different surfaces and under conditions similar to those prevailing near human-bone implants. [Int Microbiol 2013; 16(3):191-198]Keywords: orthopedic materials · orthopedic conditions · modular reactors · continuous flow · biomaterials · biofilm formation Author Biography Joana Barros, INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica. Downloads PDF Issue Vol. 16 No. 3 (2013) Section Research Articles License Submission of a manuscript to International Microbiology implies: that the work described has not been published before, including publication in the World Wide Web (except in the form of an Abstract or as part of a published lecture, review, or thesis); that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere; that all the coauthors have agreed to its publication. The corresponding author signs for and accepts responsability for releasing this material and will act on behalf of any and all coauthors regarding the editorial review and publication process.If an article is accepted for publication in International Microbiology, the authors (or other copyright holder) must transfer to the journal the right–not exclusive–to reproduce and distribute the article including reprints, translations, photographic reproductions, microform, electronic form (offline, online) or any other reproductions of similar nature. Nevertheless, all article in International Microbiology will be available on the Internet to any reader at no cost. The journal allows users to freely download, copy, print, distribute, search, and link to the full text of any article, provided the authorship and source of the published article is cited. The copyright owner's consent does not include copying for new works, or resale. In these cases, the specific written permission of International Microbiology must first be obtained.Authors are requested to create a link to the published article on the journal's website. The link must be accompanied by the following text: "The original publication is available on LINK at <http://www.im.microbios.org>. Please use the appropiate URL for the article in LINK. Articles disseminated via LINK are indexed, abstracted, and referenced by many abstracting and information services, bibliographic networks, subscription agencies, library networks, and consortia.