1887

Abstract

The effectiveness of solar disinfection (SODIS), a low-cost household water treatment method for developing countries, was investigated with flow cytometry and viability stains for the enteric bacterium . A better understanding of the process of injury or death of during SODIS could be gained by investigating six different cellular functions, namely: efflux pump activity (Syto 9 plus ethidium bromide), membrane potential [bis-(1,3-dibutylbarbituric acid)trimethine oxonol; DiBAC(3)], membrane integrity (LIVE/DEAD BacLight), glucose uptake activity (2-[-(7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazol-4-yl)amino]-2-deoxy--glucose; 2-NBDG), total ATP concentration (BacTiter-Glo) and culturability (pour-plate method). These variables were measured in K-12 MG1655 cells that were exposed to either sunlight or artificial UVA light. The inactivation pattern of cellular functions was very similar for both light sources. A UVA light dose (fluence) of <500 kJ m was enough to lower the proton motive force, such that efflux pump activity and ATP synthesis decreased significantly. The loss of membrane potential, glucose uptake activity and culturability of >80 % of the cells was observed at a fluence of ∼1500 kJ m, and the cytoplasmic membrane of bacterial cells became permeable at a fluence of >2500 kJ m. Culturable counts of stressed bacteria after anaerobic incubation on sodium pyruvate-supplemented tryptic soy agar closely correlated with the loss of membrane potential. The results strongly suggest that cells exposed to >1500 kJ m solar UVA (corresponding to 530 W m global sunlight intensity for 6 h) were no longer able to repair the damage and recover. Our study confirms the lethal effect of SODIS with cultivation-independent methods and gives a detailed picture of the ‘agony’ of when it is stressed with sunlight.

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2006-06-01
2020-08-15
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