Inducible Surface Hydrophobicity of Microbial Consortia for Biofilm Remediation

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W911NF-05-C-0126
Agency Tracking Number: A033-0163
Amount: $749,735.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2005
Solitcitation Year: 2003
Solitcitation Topic Code: ARMY03-T13
Solitcitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
350 Second Ave., Waltham, MA, 02451
Duns: N/A
Hubzone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Vladimir Gilman
 Senior Engineer
 (781) 684-4174
Business Contact
 Richard Wiesman
Title: Executive Vice President
Phone: (781) 684-4242
Research Institution
 Theodore M Liszczak
 Tufts University, Ballou Hall
Medford, MA, 02155
 (617) 627-5187
 Nonprofit college or university
Free-phase pollutants are persistent environmental contaminants. The feasibility of an enhanced process of in situ free-phase pollutant removal by micro-organisms that had been pre-adapted to the pollutant free-phase surface was confirmed during Phase I. The high affinity of the micro-organisms to the pollutant free-phase resulted from their increased hydrophobicity. More importantly, the inductiveness of the culture hydrophobicity by exposure to contaminants was demonstrated. It was shown in Phase I that the biofilm formation on free-phase pollutants was a two-stage process, involving first the colonization of the microbial population at the interface and secondly, a “steady” stage in which the culture continuously degraded the contaminants and the flux of chlorinated solvents into water was reduced by two orders of magnitude. During Phase II, the pre-adapted micro-organisms will be genetically evaluated. Mechanisms of controlled microbial death upon the substrate exhaustion will assure environmental safety. The biosafety of the selected organisms will be confirmed. The microbiological products will be formulated and their stability will be evaluated for their use and commercialization during Phase III. Pilot-scale studies involving the monitoring of the distribution of the organisms and their performance after injection in a simulated soil/water environment will also be carried out. (P-040445)

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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