News & Events
Current News & Upcoming Events
NIO in Press
Identifying mechanism of antifoulant for best use
Life on submerged structures in marine waters begins with bacterial adhesion. Such a process of colonizing bacteria on the submerged surfaces leads to 'biofouling'. Biofouling of the surfaces cause serious economic problems such as increase in fuel consumption by ships, impairment of heat transfer and induction and / or inhibition of metal corrosion, etc. To avoid biofouling, they are then treated with toxic chemicals. These chemicals are available in market by a common name 'antifoulants'. Different antifoulants work on different principles. Some act on bacterial cells and inactivate essential enzymes whereas others oxidize organic constituents in the cells. Few act adversely on the bacterial cell membranes. In general, these could therefore be referred as agents reducing cellular metabolism and growth. But still bacterial adhesion occurs and leads to fouling of submerged surfaces. It implies that there are other factors such as cell hydrophobicity, cell surface charge, and extracellular polysaccharides (EPS) known to influence bacterial adhesion to the surfaces. Moreover, effect of antifoulant on these factors was not studied earlier. The 2, 4-dinitrophenol (DNP), an un-coupler of oxidative phosphorylation, is known to inhibit bacterial adhesion to surfaces by inhibiting EPS production. However, effect of DNP on bacterial cell surface properties was not studied earlier. Scientists at this Institute have attempted to assess the effect of the DNP on cell surface hydrophobicity, cell surface charge, as well as EPS production and its effect on bacterial attachment to glass and polystyrene surfaces. The experiment revealed that there was no influence of DNP treatment on bacterial cell surface charge and EPS production. However, DNP reduce the bacterial cell surface hydrophobicity to a greater extent and there by reduce the bacterial attachment to glass and polystyrene surfaces. Thus, understanding the effect of DNP on cell surface properties and EPS production provide a better insight into the mechanism of inhibition of bacterial adhesion to surfaces that will help in the design of appropriate antifouling strategies. For more information, please read: Jain, A.; Nishad, K.K.; Bhosle, N.B. Effects of DNP on the cell surface properties of marine bacteria and its implication for adhesion to surfaces Biofouling: 23(3-4); 2007; 171-177.
NIO, Dona Paula-Goa, 403 004, India. EPABX:+91(0)832-2450450; Fax:+91(0)832-2450602, -2450603; e-mail:email@example.com