A biofilm is a protective and dynamic matrix created by bacteria and fungi mainly but is advantageous to other infecting agents. Carbohydrate-based, this extracellular film surrounds and supports pathogens and parasites as they multiply. Biofilms provide resistance to anti-microbials as well, and allows for exchange and communication with the growing community of ‘bugs’.
A common biofilm we all know is dental plaque. The tenacity of this substance is recognizable – we can brush daily but the plaque returns.
A yeast pathogen such as Candida shields itself from anti-fungal medications and powerful herbs by creating an “extracellular polymeric substance” (EPS). This biofilm, which is as thick as a human hair, helps block attempts to destroy the pathogen.
Significantly, the anionic properties of the EPS matrix attract certain toxic metal cations that provide structural strength to the biofilm. The bioaccumulation of toxic metals including mercury, gold and silver from dental amalgams will ensure the re-colonization of candida even if one manages to get it under control. Much has been written about candida’s ability to absorb and utilize micro and nano particles of certain metals.