Bile Enhances Cell Surface Hydrophobicity and Biofilm Formation of Bifidobacteria.

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Twenty-four human bifidobacterial strains were analysed for cell surface hydrophobicity (CSH) using a salt aggregation test (SAT) and a Congo red binding (CRB) assay. Three strains were selected for a systematic study on the CSH and biofilm formation: Bifidobacterium breve 46, Bifidobacterium animalis ssp. lactis 8:8 and a reference strain B. animalis ssp. lactis JCM 10602. CRB of the B. breve 46 and B. animalis ssp. lactis JCM 10602 was significantly enhanced (P < 0.05) when grown in deMan-Rogosa-Sharpe cysteine (MRSC) broth supplemented with taurocholic acid (TA) or native porcine bile (PB). An enhanced CSH of the strains grown with PB and gastric mucin correlated with an increased mucin binding and an enhanced biofilm formation in prebiotic oligosaccharide-supplemented cultures. The three strains showed late bile-induced biofilm (72 h) under an anaerobic growth condition, and both B. animalis ssp. lactis strains showed a late bile-induced biofilm formation under aerobic conditions shown by crystal violet staining. These two strains were thus considered to be oxygen tolerant and more robust. Furthermore, enhanced biofilm formation of these robust bifidobacterial strains in the presence of prebiotics may allow for strong colonisation in the gastrointestinal tract when administered to in vivo models as a "synbiotic supplement".


  • Padma Ambalam
  • Kanthi Kiran Kondepudi
  • Ingrid Nilsson
  • Torkel Wadström
  • Åsa Ljungh
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1970-1981
JournalApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch