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Research project: ChemBiofilm
Innovative strategies for biofilm prevention and protein stabilization
Project time: 01.12.09-30.11.13
Cluster coordinator: Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Streit, Universität Hamburg, Hamburg
Project partners: (alphabetical order)
   Prof. Dr. Stephanie Grond, Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen
   Prof. Dr. Kirsten Jung, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
   Prof. Dr. Andreas Liese, Technische Universität Hamburg-Harburg
   Dr. Holger Rohde, Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
   Prof. Dr. Ruth Schmitz-Streit, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
   Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Streit, Universität Hamburg

      Overview subprojects

Industrial partners:
   Beiersdorf AG, Hamburg
   Henkel KGaA, Düsseldorf
   Thor GmbH, Speyer

In their natural environment bacteria do not exist as isolated cells but grow and survive in organized communities and persist attached to solid surfaces. These microbial communities commonly called biofilms (single or multiple species) are associated with a higher level of resistance to antimicrobial agents than planktonic cells. This is a general problem that affects treatment of microbial biofilms in hospitals but also treatment and prevention strategies employed on industrial and household surfaces. Industry and health-related surfaces that are commonly colonized affect many different areas of our daily life. These include for example water supply systems, food and paper production facilities, fuel systems, household surfaces, laundry machines, paint biofilms but also cosmetic and daily health care products. In recent years it has become apparent that traditional methods of biofilm prevention are ineffective, and that this is mainly due to biofilm cells being resistant to the high concentrations of antibiotics or biocides being applied. In addition treatment of biofilm microbes by using high doses of biocides or antibiotics is often not conforming to health and environmental regulations. Therefore, the development of novel and safe strategies for the prevention of microbial biofilms in industry and health-related surfaces is urgently needed.

Within this framework the primary goal of the established ChemBiofilm network is to develop novel strategies that help to prevent microbial biofilms on industry, health-related and household surfaces. The ChemBiofilm network project has five Partners from Universities (namely, the CAU Kiel, LMU Munich, University of Tübingen, TU Hamburg, UKE Hamburg and the University of Hamburg). In addition the network is supported by industry partners namely, the Thor GmbH, Henkel AG & Co. KGaA and the Beiersdorf AG. This interdisciplinary network will also use and develop modern meta-transcriptomics and meta-proteomics technologies in microbial biofilms mainly provided by the platforms in Göttingen and Greifswald and structural resolution using the DESY in Hamburg.
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