Net growth rate of continuum heterogeneous biofilms with inhibition kinetics
Gonzo, Elio Emilio
Rajal, Veronica Beatriz
Date of Issue2018
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Singapore Centre for Environmental Life Sciences and Engineering
Biofilm systems can be modeled using a variety of analytical and numerical approaches, usually by making simplifying assumptions regarding biofilm heterogeneity and activity as well as effective diffusivity. Inhibition kinetics, albeit common in experimental systems, are rarely considered and analytical approaches are either lacking or consider effective diffusivity of the substrate and the biofilm density to remain constant. To address this obvious knowledge gap an analytical procedure to estimate the effectiveness factor (dimensionless substrate mass flux at the biofilm-fluid interface) was developed for a continuum heterogeneous biofilm with multiple limiting-substrate Monod kinetics to different types of inhibition kinetics. The simple perturbation technique, previously validated to quantify biofilm activity, was applied to systems where either the substrate or the inhibitor is the limiting component, and cases where the inhibitor is a reaction product or the substrate also acts as the inhibitor. Explicit analytical equations are presented for the effectiveness factor estimation and, therefore, the calculation of biomass growth rate or limiting substrate/inhibitor consumption rate, for a given biofilm thickness. The robustness of the new biofilm model was tested using kinetic parameters experimentally determined for the growth of Pseudomonas putida CCRC 14365 on phenol. Several additional cases have been analyzed, including examples where the effectiveness factor can reach values greater than unity, characteristic of systems with inhibition kinetics. Criteria to establish when the effectiveness factor can reach values greater than unity in each of the cases studied are also presented.
npj Biofilms and Microbiomes
© 2018 The Author(s). This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.