Expression of biofilm associated genes in Staphylococcus pseudintermedius

Crawford, Evan Cameron
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University of Guelph

Staphylococcus pseudintermedius is a common commensal organism of canines that has emerged and disseminated internationally as an important pathogen. The biofilm forming ability of this bacterium is increasingly appreciated as a virulence factor, especially in surgical site and implant associated infections, where the formation of biofilms results in persistent, recurrent infections that are often recalcitrant to treatment. This thesis is an investigation into the genetic basis of biofilm formation in Staphylococcus pseudintermedius. The initial step was the development and validation of a quantitative PCR test including the identification of suitable reference genes in this species. Subsequently, that test was used to examine the expression of multiple biofilm associated genes responsible for numerous aspect of biofilm development and maturation. Significant variations in expression levels between surfaces were identified, providing potential insights into several clinical situations. This work will form the foundation for future studies examining specific details of biofilm formation and development, as well as studies directly examining clinical formed biofilms.

biofilm, MRSP, gene expression, qPCR, surgical site infection