The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) presents a seminar by Professor Jesse Greener, from the Department of Chemistry at Laval University, Quebec.
Bacterial Biofilm Research Renaissance by Combining Nanoscience and Microfluidics
Microbial biofilms are ubiquitous in natural ecosystems as well medically relevant due to their roles in areas ranging from oral health to deadly invasive pathogens. At the same time new directions in materials science demonstrate that biofilms can be used as natural catalytic material. For example, electrophilic biofilms in microbial fuel cells are being actively developed to both clean wastewater and generate electricity at the same time. To better understand the complex nature of biofilms, new methods are needed to study their physiochemical properties. Thus, after motivating why biofilms are an important class of new biomaterials, Professor Greener will demonstrate new methods developed in his laboratories that merge of microfluidics, analytical chemistry and nanoscience to fuel the next wave of biofilm research. The talk will culminate with new results from two studies: (i) a new microfluidic platform with metal enhanced nanoprobes for in situ pH mapping of oral biofilms under well-controlled hydrodynamic and chemical stimuli and (ii) new results from CNT-doped biofilms that show vastly improved energy production in microbial fuel cells due to improved electrical properties.
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