Photo of Garth James

Office: 321 Barnard Hall
Specialty: Medical biofilms

Dr. James has over twenty-five years of experience in bacteriology and biofilm research in industry and academia.  He has managed the Medical Biofilms Laboratory (MBL) at the Center for Biofilm Engineering since 2004. In this role he is responsible for project development and management as well personnel management. Dr. James has been a co-PI on several NIH-funded grants as well as directing biofilm research and testing projects for over 30 companies and participating in four Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) funded projects. Dr. James has considerable experience at working with multidisciplinary teams.

The MBL is equipped to culture biofilms and human or animal cells, as well as perform general and molecular microbiology, cell biology, and immunology techniques.  The lab has two dedicated biological safety cabinets and a fume hood.  In addition, equipment is available at the CBE including a flow cytometer, anaerobic glove-box chambers, and microscopy facilities.

Range of activities offered by the Medical Biofilms Laboratory

Biofilm Growth Methods

  1. Colony biofilm model
  2. Drip-flow biofilm reactor
  3. Colony/drip-flow biofilm reactor
  4. Centers for Disease Control biofilm reactor
  5. Flow cells
  6. Calgary biofilm device
  7. Modified Robbins device

Biofilm Co-culture Models

  1. Keratinocyte/biofilm model
  2. Fibroblast/biofilm model


  1. Cryoembedding and cryosectioning
  2. Tissue stains (Chromaview, Viagram)
  3. Microbial stains (Live/Dead, CTC, Sytox green, Calcein AM)
  4. Light microscopy (brightfield and epi-fluorescence)
  5. Confocal scanning laser microscopy
  6. Scanning electron microscopy
  7. Computer image analysis (Metamorph, Imaris)
  8. Colony Forming Units (CFU) counts, enrichment culture, microbial isolation
  9. Antibiotic sensitivity/biofilm tolerance testing
  10. 16S analysis, clone libraries, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE)
  11. Quantitative PCR
  12. Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  13. Proteomics (1D and 2D gels, western blot, 2D-differential gel electrophoresis)


Biofilm related publications searchable by author via CBE Publications Database

Related News

“MSU biofilm researchers help doctors understand, treat chronic wounds” MSU News July 15, 2019

MSU hosts fifth annual conference to help move life-saving products to the marketplace” MSU News Service February 15, 2018