The significance of understanding this is it helps us understand an important part of how our gut microbiome influences our health. Professor Michael Nash from the University of Basel and ETH Zurich studied combinations of "single-molecule atomic force microscopy, single-molecule fluorescence and molecular dynamics simulations", according to the report.
Researchers believe there is a dual binding mode, one significantly stronger than the other. The bacteria is believed to control the binding mode preference by modifying the proteins and the adherence strength. "This would allow switching from a low to high adhesion state depending on the environment," according to Nash. Learning this process and how it works may help scientists employ bacteria that adhere to certain disease targets, at the higher adhesion rate.