Flotation Characteristics of Cyanobacterium Anabaena Flos-aquae for Gas Vesicle Production

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Fall 2000


Cyanobacterium Anabaena flos-aquae was cultivated in photobioreactors for production of intracellular gas vesicles (GVs), as potential oxygen microcarriers. Natural flotation of the buoyant culture was investigated as a potential means of cell harvesting, because filtration and centrifugation tended to destroy the vesicles. Best flotation was found with actively growing culture and when conducted in the dark. The flotation-related cell properties, including the specific GV content, vesicle-collapsed filament density, and intracellular carbohydrate content, were measured to understand the phenomena. During the batch culture, the specific GV content remained relatively constant at 370 μL/(g dry cells) but the filament density (ranging 1.02 to 1.08 g/cm3) showed a decrease-then-increase profile. The increase began when the growth slowed down because of the reduced light availability at high cell concentrations. The dark flotation was studied with both actively growing (μ ≈ 0.2 day−1) and stationary-phase cultures. The specific GV content of the stationary-phase culture remained relatively constant while that of the growing culture increased slightly. The intracellular carbohydrate content of the growing culture decreased much faster and more significantly, from 57 to 10 mg/(g dry cells) in ⩽ 8 h. The filament density also decreased, apparently parallel to the profiles of carbohydrate content. © 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Biotechnol Bioeng 60: 636–641, 1998.





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