Effects of fullerene nanoparticles on Escherichia coli K12 respiratory activity in aqueous suspension and potential use for membrane biofouling control


Journal Article

The attachment and respiratory activity of the model bacterium, Escherichia coli K12 on microfiltration (MF) membranes coated with the fullerene C60 and the influence of colloidal aggregates of C60 (nC60) on this bacterium in a suspended culture environment were investigated in a low-salt medium. Deposition of C60 on the surface of ceramic alumina membranes decreased the membrane surface zeta potential and increased the hydrophobicity of the membrane surface. These changes in membrane properties were correlated with a decrease in the number of bacteria observed on the membrane surface. Although a hydrophobic surface, with or without C60, resulted in reduced bacterial attachment, our data indicate that C60 impeded bacterial surface growth beyond that expected from hydrophobicity alone. Bacterial respiratory activity was also shown to be inhibited in suspended growth environments in the presence of the colloidal suspension of C60. A reduction in respiratory activity was observed with increasing concentrations of nC60 in the suspension. These results confirm that C60 inhibits microbial respiratory activity and/or attachment and suggest that this material may be useful as an anti-fouling agent to prevent biofouling of membranes or other surfaces. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Chae, SR; Wang, S; Hendren, ZD; Wiesner, MR; Watanabe, Y; Gunsch, CK

Published Date

  • March 5, 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 329 / 1-2

Start / End Page

  • 68 - 74

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0376-7388

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.memsci.2008.12.023

Citation Source

  • Scopus