Predation of bacteria by the protozoa Tetrahymena pyriformis in toluene-degrading cultures
The influence of the toluene concentration on predation of tuluene-degrading bacteria by the protozoa Tetrahymena pyriformis was investigated in suspended batch cultures continuously aerated with toluene-contaminated air. At gas phase concentrations of 0.035 to 0.74 g m-3, toluene did not significantly affected protozoan activity and the final bacteria concentration was reduced by growing protozoa by 98 to 99.9% compared to protozoa-free controls. As the toluene concentration was increased to 1.16-1.33 g m-3, the reduction of the bacteria cell concentration was 80%. At 3.35 g toluene m-3, growth of T. pyriformis was completely inhibited. Overall, the results presented herein demonstrate that protozoa grazing on bacteria play a major role in controlling bacterial cell concentration, but that the toxicity of the treated pollutants to the protozoa is an important factor that needs to be taken into account in biological treatment processes.
Cox, HHJ; Nguyen, TT; Deshusses, MA
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