Letters in Applied Microbiology

Mamane, H.; Lakretz, A.; Sherman, I.

Ultraviolet (UV) irradiation is an emerging strategy for controlling the formation of undesired biofilms in water desalination facilities using reverse osmosis (RO). However, most studies examining these pretreatments are limited as they have been conducted on single-species cultures, while biofilms are composed of multiple-species communities. The goal of this study was to investigate the effect of UV-C irradiation on a model community composed of six environmental isolates from a marine biofilm formed in RO seawater desalination plant. There was a high variance in the susceptibility of the single-isolate cultures to UV-C, from no response (isolate Eryth23) to complete inactivation (isolate Vib3). The most active wavelength was around 260 nm, resulting in a loss of viability of single-isolate cultures and loss of vitality of the mixed-isolate cultures. With respect to biofilm formation, the activity of this wavelength was completely different compared to its activity on planktonic suspension. Irradiation with 260 nm did not inhibit the total biofilm formation by the six-isolate culture; moreover, isolates such as the resistant Eryth23 or the susceptible Pseudoalt17, even gained abundance in the mixed isolate biofilm. The only decrease in total biofilm was obtained from irradiation at 280 nm, which was less active against the planktonic culture. These results indicate that the complexity of the biofilm-forming microbial community may contribute to its resistance to UV-C irradiation.

SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY:

This study examined the resistance of a multiple-isolate native marine culture to UV-C irradiation, in terms of viability, vitality and the ability to form biofilm. Results of this study showed that even though most of the cells were inactivated both in single-isolate and in multiple-isolate cultures, still the multiple-isolate cultures manages to form biofilms, surprisingly with higher biomass than without irradiation. The significance of the study is in its conclusion that studies on UV-C irradiation of biofilm-forming model micro-organisms are not always applicable to natural multiple-species communities.

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Resistance of a multiple‐isolate marine culture to UV‐C irradiation: inactivation vs. biofilm formation
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Mamane, H.; Lakretz, A.; Sherman, I.

Resistance of a multiple‐isolate marine culture to UV‐C irradiation: inactivation vs. biofilm formation

Ultraviolet (UV) irradiation is an emerging strategy for controlling the formation of undesired biofilms in water desalination facilities using reverse osmosis (RO). However, most studies examining these pretreatments are limited as they have been conducted on single-species cultures, while biofilms are composed of multiple-species communities. The goal of this study was to investigate the effect of UV-C irradiation on a model community composed of six environmental isolates from a marine biofilm formed in RO seawater desalination plant. There was a high variance in the susceptibility of the single-isolate cultures to UV-C, from no response (isolate Eryth23) to complete inactivation (isolate Vib3). The most active wavelength was around 260 nm, resulting in a loss of viability of single-isolate cultures and loss of vitality of the mixed-isolate cultures. With respect to biofilm formation, the activity of this wavelength was completely different compared to its activity on planktonic suspension. Irradiation with 260 nm did not inhibit the total biofilm formation by the six-isolate culture; moreover, isolates such as the resistant Eryth23 or the susceptible Pseudoalt17, even gained abundance in the mixed isolate biofilm. The only decrease in total biofilm was obtained from irradiation at 280 nm, which was less active against the planktonic culture. These results indicate that the complexity of the biofilm-forming microbial community may contribute to its resistance to UV-C irradiation.

SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY:

This study examined the resistance of a multiple-isolate native marine culture to UV-C irradiation, in terms of viability, vitality and the ability to form biofilm. Results of this study showed that even though most of the cells were inactivated both in single-isolate and in multiple-isolate cultures, still the multiple-isolate cultures manages to form biofilms, surprisingly with higher biomass than without irradiation. The significance of the study is in its conclusion that studies on UV-C irradiation of biofilm-forming model micro-organisms are not always applicable to natural multiple-species communities.

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