S. Li, H. Winters, L.O. Villacorte, Y. Ekowati, A.-H. Emwas, M.D. Kennedy, G.L. Amy
Marine Chemistry, volume 174, pp. 131-140, (2015)
Transparent exopolymer particles, Reverse osmosis, Biofouling, Marine, Bacteria, Algae
Transparent-exopolymer-particles (TEPs) have been
recently identified as a significant contributor to surface biofouling,
such as on reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. TEP research has mainly
focused on algal TEP/TEP precursors while limited investigations have
been conducted on those released by bacteria. In this study, TEP/TEP
precursors derived from both algae and bacteria were isolated and then
characterized to investigate their similarities and/or differences using
various advanced analytical techniques, thus providing a better
understanding of their potential effect on biofouling. Bacterial TEP/TEP
precursors were isolated from two species of marine bacteria (Pseudidiomarina homiensis and Pseudoalteromonas atlantica) while algal TEP/TEP precursors were isolated from two marine algae species (Alexandrium tamarense and Chaetoceros affinis).
indicated that both isolated bacterial and algal TEP/TEP precursors
were associated with protein-like materials, and most TEP precursors
were high-molecular-weight biopolymers. Furthermore all investigated
algal and bacterial TEP/TEP precursors showed a lectin-like property,
which can enable them to act as a chemical conditioning layer and to
agglutinate bacteria. This property may enhance surface biofouling.
However, both proton nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectra and the
nitrogen/carbon (N/C) ratios suggested that the algal TEP/TEP precursors
contained much less protein content than the bacterial TEP/TEP
precursors. This difference may influence their initial deposition and
further development of surface biofouling.