Skip to Main Content
Surface roughness is known to play a significant role in the cell-surface attachment process, particularly when the surface irregularities are of a dimension that is comparable to the bacterial size and hence provide shelter from unfavorable environmental factors. To explore the influence of nano-scale surface roughness on bacterial attachment this study utilized as-received and chemically treated glass surfaces as substrata for bacterial adsorption. Surface modification via chemical etching resulted in a 70% decrease in the nano-scale roughness of the glass surface with no alteration of its chemical composition. We have observed that bacteria belonging to three different taxa, while adhering to the modified surface, exhibited similar attachment tendencies to the un-modified substratum, however the number of attached cells increased threefold. The increase in extent of attachment was also associated with bacterial morphologic and metabolic changes. The results obtained suggest that nano-scale surface roughness might strongly influence bacterial attachment.