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J Microbiol Methods. 2005 Sep;62(3):337-44.

NMR methods for in situ biofilm metabolism studies.

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Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, MSIN: K8-98, Richland, WA 99352, USA.


Novel procedures and instrumentation are described for nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and imaging studies of live, in situ microbial films. A perfused NMR/optical microscope sample chamber containing a planar biofilm support was integrated into a recirculation/dilution flow loop growth reactor system and used to grow in situ Shewanella oneidensis strain MR-1 biofilms. Localized NMR techniques were developed and used to non-invasively monitor time-resolved metabolite concentrations and to image the biomass volume and distribution. As a first illustration of the feasibility of the methodology an initial 13C-labeled lactate metabolic pathway study was performed, yielding results consistent with existing genomic data for MR-1. These results represent progress toward our ultimate goal of correlating time- and depth-resolved metabolism and mass transport with gene expression in live in situ biofilms using combined NMR/optical microscopy techniques.

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