A conceptual model describing macromolecule degradation by suspended cultures and biofilms

David R. Confer, Bruce Ernest Logan

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Macromolecular (> 1,000 daltons) compounds such as proteins and polysaccharides can constitute a significant portion of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in wastewater, but limited information is available on how these compounds are degraded in suspended and fixed-film biological wastewater treatment systems. Bacteria cannot assimilate intact macromolecules but must first hydrolyze them to monomers or small oligomers. Here, we summarize experiments performed in our laboratory which indicate that the enzymes responsible for hydrolysis are primarily those that remain attached to the cell. In biofilm cultures fed macromolecular substrates, for example, no more than 8% of total hydrolytic activity was found to be located in the cell-free bulk solution. These and other experiments support a generalized mechanism for macromolecule degradation by biofilms that features cell-associated hydrolysis, followed by the release of hydrolytic fragments back into bulk solution. The extent of fragment release is larger for proteins (bovine serum albumin) than for carbohydrates (dextrans).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-234
Number of pages4
JournalWater Science and Technology
Volume37
Issue number4-5
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998
EventProceedings of the 1997 2nd International Conference on Microorganisms in Activated Sludge and Biofilm Processes - Berkeley, CA, USA
Duration: Jul 21 1997Jul 23 1997

Fingerprint

suspended culture
Biofilms
Macromolecules
biofilm
hydrolysis
Hydrolysis
Proteins
Degradation
degradation
protein
Dextran
Polysaccharides
Carbohydrates
Organic carbon
polysaccharide
Oligomers
Wastewater treatment
dissolved organic carbon
serum
carbohydrate

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology

Cite this

@article{047ff6fa868b414e910fc1e6e9ffb566,
title = "A conceptual model describing macromolecule degradation by suspended cultures and biofilms",
abstract = "Macromolecular (> 1,000 daltons) compounds such as proteins and polysaccharides can constitute a significant portion of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in wastewater, but limited information is available on how these compounds are degraded in suspended and fixed-film biological wastewater treatment systems. Bacteria cannot assimilate intact macromolecules but must first hydrolyze them to monomers or small oligomers. Here, we summarize experiments performed in our laboratory which indicate that the enzymes responsible for hydrolysis are primarily those that remain attached to the cell. In biofilm cultures fed macromolecular substrates, for example, no more than 8{\%} of total hydrolytic activity was found to be located in the cell-free bulk solution. These and other experiments support a generalized mechanism for macromolecule degradation by biofilms that features cell-associated hydrolysis, followed by the release of hydrolytic fragments back into bulk solution. The extent of fragment release is larger for proteins (bovine serum albumin) than for carbohydrates (dextrans).",
author = "Confer, {David R.} and Logan, {Bruce Ernest}",
year = "1998",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/S0273-1223(98)00112-7",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "37",
pages = "231--234",
journal = "Water Science and Technology",
issn = "0273-1223",
publisher = "IWA Publishing",
number = "4-5",

}

A conceptual model describing macromolecule degradation by suspended cultures and biofilms. / Confer, David R.; Logan, Bruce Ernest.

In: Water Science and Technology, Vol. 37, No. 4-5, 01.01.1998, p. 231-234.

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

TY - JOUR

T1 - A conceptual model describing macromolecule degradation by suspended cultures and biofilms

AU - Confer, David R.

AU - Logan, Bruce Ernest

PY - 1998/1/1

Y1 - 1998/1/1

N2 - Macromolecular (> 1,000 daltons) compounds such as proteins and polysaccharides can constitute a significant portion of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in wastewater, but limited information is available on how these compounds are degraded in suspended and fixed-film biological wastewater treatment systems. Bacteria cannot assimilate intact macromolecules but must first hydrolyze them to monomers or small oligomers. Here, we summarize experiments performed in our laboratory which indicate that the enzymes responsible for hydrolysis are primarily those that remain attached to the cell. In biofilm cultures fed macromolecular substrates, for example, no more than 8% of total hydrolytic activity was found to be located in the cell-free bulk solution. These and other experiments support a generalized mechanism for macromolecule degradation by biofilms that features cell-associated hydrolysis, followed by the release of hydrolytic fragments back into bulk solution. The extent of fragment release is larger for proteins (bovine serum albumin) than for carbohydrates (dextrans).

AB - Macromolecular (> 1,000 daltons) compounds such as proteins and polysaccharides can constitute a significant portion of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in wastewater, but limited information is available on how these compounds are degraded in suspended and fixed-film biological wastewater treatment systems. Bacteria cannot assimilate intact macromolecules but must first hydrolyze them to monomers or small oligomers. Here, we summarize experiments performed in our laboratory which indicate that the enzymes responsible for hydrolysis are primarily those that remain attached to the cell. In biofilm cultures fed macromolecular substrates, for example, no more than 8% of total hydrolytic activity was found to be located in the cell-free bulk solution. These and other experiments support a generalized mechanism for macromolecule degradation by biofilms that features cell-associated hydrolysis, followed by the release of hydrolytic fragments back into bulk solution. The extent of fragment release is larger for proteins (bovine serum albumin) than for carbohydrates (dextrans).

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0031833317&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0031833317&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/S0273-1223(98)00112-7

DO - 10.1016/S0273-1223(98)00112-7

M3 - Conference article

AN - SCOPUS:0031833317

VL - 37

SP - 231

EP - 234

JO - Water Science and Technology

JF - Water Science and Technology

SN - 0273-1223

IS - 4-5

ER -