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ScientificWorldJournal. 2014;2014:139653. doi: 10.1155/2014/139653. Epub 2014 Jul 6.

Synergistic microbial consortium for bioenergy generation from complex natural energy sources.

Author information

1
Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551 ; School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798.
2
Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551 ; Interdisciplinary Graduate School, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551.
3
Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551 ; Graduate School of Integrative Sciences and Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117543.
4
School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798.
5
Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551 ; School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798.
6
Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551 ; School of Biological Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637551.

Abstract

Microbial species have evolved diverse mechanisms for utilization of complex carbon sources. Proper combination of targeted species can affect bioenergy production from natural waste products. Here, we established a stable microbial consortium with Escherichia coli and Shewanella oneidensis in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) to produce bioenergy from an abundant natural energy source, in the form of the sarcocarp harvested from coconuts. This component is mostly discarded as waste. However, through its usage as a feedstock for MFCs to produce useful energy in this study, the sarcocarp can be utilized meaningfully. The monospecies S. oneidensis system was able to generate bioenergy in a short experimental time frame while the monospecies E. coli system generated significantly less bioenergy. A combination of E. coli and S. oneidensis in the ratio of 1:9 (v:v) significantly enhanced the experimental time frame and magnitude of bioenergy generation. The synergistic effect is suggested to arise from E. coli and S. oneidensis utilizing different nutrients as electron donors and effect of flavins secreted by S. oneidensis. Confocal images confirmed the presence of biofilms and point towards their importance in generating bioenergy in MFCs.

PMID:
25097866
PMCID:
PMC4109225
DOI:
10.1155/2014/139653
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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