Novel whole cell adhesion assays of three isolates of the fouling diatom Amphora coffeaeformis reveal diverse responses to surfaces of different wettability
Whole cell, strength of adhesion assays of three different isolates of the fouling diatom Amphora coffeaeformis were compared using a hydrophilic surface viz. acid washed glass (AWG), and a hydrophobic surface viz. a self assembled monolayer (SAM) of undecanethiol (UDT). Assays were performed using a newly designed turbulent flow channel that permits direct observation and recording of cell populations on a test surface. Exposure to continuous shear stress over 3 h revealed that the more motile isolate, WIL2, adhered much more strongly to both test surfaces compared to the other two strains. When the response of the isolates to shear stress after 3 h was compared, there was no significant difference in the percentage of cells removed, irrespective of surface wettability. Cells of the three isolates of A. coffeaeformis varied significantly in their response to different surfaces during initial adhesion, indicating the presence of a wide range of 'physiological races' within this species.