Bacterial community analysis, new exoelectrogen isolation and enhanced performance of microbial electrochemical systems using nano-decorated anodes Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cr56n386q

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  • Microbial electrochemical systems (MESs) have attracted much research attention in recent years due to their promising applications in renewable energy generation, bioremediation, and wastewater treatment. In a MES, microorganisms interact with electrodes via electrons, catalyzing oxidation and reduction reactions at the anode and the cathode. The bacterial community of a high power mixed consortium MESs (maximum power density is 6.5W/m²) was analyzed by using denature gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and 16S DNA clone library methods. The bacterial DGGE profiles were relatively complex (more than 10 bands) but only three brightly dominant bands in DGGE results. These results indicated there are three dominant bacterial species in mixed consortium MFCs. The 16S DNA clone library method results revealed that the predominant bacterial species in mixed culture is Geobacter sp (66%), Arcobacter sp and Citrobacter sp. These three bacterial species reached to 88% of total bacterial species. This result is consistent with the DGGE result which showed that three bright bands represented three dominant bacterial species. Exoelectrogenic bacterial strain SX-1 was isolated from a mediator-less microbial fuel cell by conventional plating techniques with ferric citrate as electron acceptor under anaerobic conditions. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rDNA sequence revealed that it was related to the members of Citrobacter genus with Citrobacter sp. sdy-48 being the most closely related species. The bacterial strain SX-1 produced electricity from citrate, acetate, glucose, sucrose, glycerol, and lactose in MFCs with the highest current density of 205 mA/m² generated from citrate. Cyclic voltammetry analysis indicated that membrane associated proteins may play an important role in facilitating electron transfer from the bacteria to the electrode. This is the first study that demonstrates that Citrobacter species can transfer electrons to extracellular electron acceptors. Citrobacter strain SX-1 is capable of generating electricity from a wide range of substrates in MFCs. This finding increases the known diversity of power generating exoelectrogens and provids a new strain to explore the mechanisms of extracellular electron transfer from bacteria to electrode. The wide range of substrate utilization by SX-1 increases the application potential of MFCs in renewable energy generation and waste treatment. Anode properties are critical for the performance of microbial electrolysis cells (MECs). Inexpensive Fe nanoparticle modified graphite disks were used as anodes to preliminarily investigate the effects of nanoparticles on the performance of Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 in MECs. Results demonstrated that average current densities produced with Fe nanoparticle decorated anodes were up to 5.9-fold higher than plain graphite anodes. Whole genome microarray analysis of the gene expression showed that genes encoding biofilm formation were significantly up-regulated as a response to nanoparticle decorated anodes. Increased expression of genes related to nanowires, flavins and c-type cytochromes indicate that enhanced mechanisms of electron transfer to the anode may also have contributed to the observed increases in current density. The majority of the remaining differentially expressed genes were associated with electron transport and anaerobic metabolism demonstrating a systemic response to increased power loads. The carbon nanotube (CNT) is another form of nano materials. Carbon nanotube (CNT) modified graphite disks were used as anodes to investigate the effects of nanostructures on the performance S. oneidensis MR-1 in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs). The current densities produced with CNT decorated anodes were up to 5.6-fold higher than plain graphite anodes. Global transcriptome analysis showed that cytochrome c genes associated with extracellular electron transfer are up-expressed by CNT decorated anodes, which is the leading factor to contribute current increase in CNT decorated anode MECs. The up regulated genes encoded to flavin also contribute to current enhancement in CNT decorated anode MECs.
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