Home > Journals > Otorinolaringologia > Past Issues > Otorinolaringologia 2012 June;62(2) > Otorinolaringologia 2012 June;62(2):121-30





A Journal on Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery,
Plastic Reconstructive Surgery, Otoneurosurgery

Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, Scopus




Otorinolaringologia 2012 June;62(2):121-30

language: English

The role of biofilms in otitis media: a review

Coticchia J., Sheyn A., Nation J.

Division of Pediatric Otolaryngology, Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI, USA


There is increasing evidence that nasopharyngeal biofilms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of otitis media. Over 65% of human infections have been linked to the biofilm phenotype. In addition, in addition the biofilm paradigm provides a paradigm for the chronic and recurrent nature of otitis media. Biofilms are a unique life style of microorganisms defined as an assemblage of microbial cells enclosed in an exopolysaccharide (EPS) matrix. Biofilms are also 100-1000 times more resistant to antimicrobial therapy and the identification of biofilms in both the middle ear and nasopharynx of otitis media suggests that these microbial ecosystems may play a dominant role in the pathogenesis of otitis media. There have been a number of important studies over the past 10-15 years on biofilms, from our department and others. We attempted to collect and review these articles in a concise manner to give a clear picture of how this phenotype relates to the pathogenesis of otitis media.

top of page

Publication History

Cite this article as

Corresponding author e-mail