Biofilms are assemblages of microbial cells, extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), and other components extracted from the environment in which they develop. Within biofilms, the spatial distribution of these components can vary. Here we present a fundamental characterization study to show differences between biofilms formed by Gram-positive methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Gram-negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and the yeast-type Candida albicans using synchrotron macro attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) micro-spectroscopy. We were able to characterise the pathogenic biofilms’ heterogeneous distribution, which is challenging to do using traditional techniques. Multivariate analyses revealed that the polysaccharides area (1200–950 cm−1) accounted for the most significant variance between biofilm sam-ples, and other spectral regions corresponding to amides, lipids, and polysaccharides all contrib-uted to sample variation. In general, this study will advance our understanding of microbial bio-films and serve as a model for future research on how to use synchrotron source ATR-FTIR micro-spectroscopy to analyse their variations and spatial arrangements.
- Spatial heterogeneity