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Biofilms and Infection in Dialysis Patients


Address correspondence to: M. K. Dasgupta, MD, Division of Nephrology and Immunology, 2E2.23 WCM Health Sciences Buildings, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2B7. e-mail:


Biofilm bacterial infections are implicated in most human bacterial infections and are also common in patients undergoing treatment with hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Skin bacteria, which grow into microcolonies with biofilm formation in dialysis environments, are implicated in most of these infections. Dissemination of bacterial biofilms in hemodialysis patients induces bacteremia and endotoxemia. In peritoneal dialysis patients, biofilm causes peritonitis and catheter-related infections with consequent loss of catheters and technique failure. Effective strategies for the diagnosis, intervention, and prevention of biofilm-related infections in dialysis patients are described in this review.