Perfusion Microfermentor Integrated into a Fiber Optic Quasi-Elastic Light Scattering Sensor for Fast Screening of Microbial Growth Parameters.


Laboratory of Photonic Materials and Devices, School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Campinas, São Paulo 13083-860, Brazil. [Email]


This research presents a microfermentor integrated into an optical fiber sensor based on quasi-elastic light scattering (QELS) to monitor and swiftly identify cellular growth kinetic parameters. The system uses a 1310 nm laser light that is guided through single-mode silica optical fibers to the interior of perfusion chambers, which are separated by polycarbonate membranes (470 nm pores) from microchannels, where a culture medium flows in a constant concentration. The system contains four layers, a superior and an inferior layer made of glass, and two intermediate poly(dimethylsiloxane) layers that contain the microchannels and the perfusion chambers, forming a reversible microfluidic device that requires only the sealing of the fibers to the inferior glass cover. The QELS autocorrelation decay rates of the optical signals were correlated to the cells counting in a microscope, and the application of this microsystem to the monitoring of alcoholic fermentation of Saccharomyces cerevisiae resulted in the kinetic parameters of KM = 4.1 g/L and μm = 0.49 h-1. These results agree with both the data reported in the literature and with the control batch test, showing that it is a reliable and efficient biological monitoring system.


biological monitoring,fiber optic sensor,microbial growth screening,microfermentor,quasi-elastic light scattering,

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