Here it is team, a moment for me to be egotistical and write about my research, which is somewhat relevant to everyday life if you exist as a human on this planet.

For the past year and a half I’ve been working on a project the centres around biofilms.

You know how when you don’t brush your teeth you get that fuzzy stuff on your teeth? Yeah, that’s a biofilm. Biofilms are basically bacteria built up on bacteria on bacteria on bacteria. What happens in your mouth is that a bug (which normally resides in your mouth, it’s not abnormal) sticks to your tooth. Another bug sticks to that one, and another and another. In between the bugs there are bits of sugar and protein and other stuff that helps the bugs stick together even more. Think of it like a brownie; the chocolate bits and the nuts and the marshmallows etc are the bacteria, and the brownie mix in between them is the “extracellular matrix” made of those proteins and sugars and stuff.

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Biofilms grown in lots of places, not just on your teeth. They can grow in environmental places like inside pipes in water plants. They can also grow on implanted medical devices (oooooo). Like if you were to get a urinary cathater if you get admitted to hospital, or a pacemaker, or a hip replacement, or an IV line or something. Now here’s why biofilms are bad news.

Little bits of the biofilm can break off and get into the bloodstream, and cause systemic infection which means all over infection, and bad shit can happen then, like sepsis. Here is my post about sepsis! Read it to Get Learned about what sepsis is.

Sepsis is like the worst thing that can happen, but other stuff happens too. Like an infected hip replacement will need antibiotics to treat it, and maybe even a revision where they take the replacement out, wash it and put it back in. Which is shitty to begin with, not to mention that the type of person getting a hip replacement is probably old, and unlikely to be super good at handling not one but two surgeries! So yeah, in general we should avoid biofilms if poss.

So there’s a little short intro into what Tara does with her time, I actually can’t tell you what we are doing about the biofilms cos it’s #confidential and I would get #sued cos #intellectualproperty and stuff. But now you know what a biofilm is! So yay, you Got Learned! Well done. Stay tuned for more egotistical and esoteric content, Get Learned more!

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