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Nanomechanical Characterization of Surface Adhesion Behavior of Microbial Cells and Its Relation with Cell Aggregation

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In this study, we characterized surface mechanical properties of four bacterial strains isolated from activated sludge with a wide range of aggregation ability, using AFM (Atomic Force Microscopy). Two strains showing significant aggregation propensity possessed higher adhesion energy, whereas the other two with less such tendency had lower adhesion energy. AFM results depicted different thickness and density of EPS (Extracellular Polymeric Substances) among four strains, which were consistent with the abovementioned result. This high correlation between cell aggregation and adhesion properties demonstrated direct quantitative surface mechanical characterization by AFM is a promising way to study microbial aggregation phenomenon.

Keywords: Microbial aggregation; aggregation index; atomic force microscopy (AFM); extracellular polymeric substances (EPS)

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2010

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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