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dc.contributor.authorPinel, Ingrid S M
dc.contributor.authorKleikamp, Hugo B.C.
dc.contributor.authorPabst, Martin
dc.contributor.authorVrouwenvelder, Johannes S.
dc.contributor.authorvan Loosdrecht, Mark C.M.
dc.contributor.authorLin, Yuemei
dc.identifier.citationPinel, I. S. M., Kleikamp, H. B. C., Pabst, M., Vrouwenvelder, J. S., van Loosdrecht, M. C. M., & Lin, Y. (2020). Sialic Acids: An Important Family of Carbohydrates Overlooked in Environmental Biofilms. Applied Sciences, 10(21), 7694. doi:10.3390/app10217694
dc.description.abstractSialic acids in the structural matrix of biofilms developing in engineered water systems constitute a potential target in the battle against biofouling. This report focuses specifically on the presence of sialic acids as part of the extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) of biofilms forming in cooling towers and the potential effect of nutrient starvation on sialic acid presence and abundance. Two cooling water compositions were compared in parallel pilot-scale cooling towers, one poor in nutrients and one enriched in nutrients. Fresh deposits from the two cooling towers were collected after a five-week operation period. EPS extractions and analyses by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and high-resolution mass spectrometry (MS), along with 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing were performed. The results of MS analyses showed the presence of pseudaminic/legionaminic acids (Pse/Leg) and 2-keto-3-deoxy-d-glycero-d-galacto-nononic acid (KDN) in both biofilm EPS samples. FTIR measurements showed the characteristic vibration of sialic acid-like compounds ν(C=O)OH in the nutrient poor sample exclusively. Our findings, combined with other recent studies, suggest that bacterial sialic acids are common compounds in environmental biofilms. Additionally, the conservation of sialic acid production pathways under nutrient starvation highlights their importance as constituents of the EPS. Further in-depth studies are necessary to understand the role of sialic acids in the structural cohesion and protection of environmental biofilm layer.
dc.description.sponsorshipThe authors would like to thank Evides Industriewater B.V. for their financial support. Thank you also to Lan Hee Kim and Nadia Farhat for their contributions with the process operation and sample collections.
dc.publisherMDPI AG
dc.rightsThis article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license.
dc.titleSialic acids: An important family of carbohydrates overlooked in environmental biofilms
dc.contributor.departmentEnvironmental Science and Engineering Program
dc.contributor.departmentWater Desalination and Reuse Research Center (WDRC)
dc.contributor.departmentBiological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering (BESE) Division
dc.identifier.journalApplied Sciences (Switzerland)
dc.eprint.versionPublisher's Version/PDF
dc.contributor.institutionDepartment of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Delft University of Technology, Van der Maasweg 9, 2629 HZ, Delft, The Netherlands
kaust.personVrouwenvelder, Johannes S.

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