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Yarrowia lipolytica 3589, a tropical marine yeast, grew aerobically on a broad range of bromoalkanes varying in carbon chain length and differing in degree and position of bromide group. Amongst the bromoalkanes studied, viz. 2-bromopropane (2-BP), 1-bromobutane (1-BB), 1,5-dibromopentane (1,5-DBP) and 1-bromodecane (1-BD), the best utilized was 1-BD, with a maximal growth rate (μ(max) ) of 0.055 h⁻¹ and an affinity ratio (μ(max) /K(s) ) of 0.022. Utilization of these bromoalkanes as growth substrates was associated with a concomitant release of bromide (8202.9 µm) and cell mass (36 × 10⁹ cells/ml), occurring maximally on 1-BD. Adherence of yeast cells to these hydrophobic bromoalkanes was observed microscopically, with an increase in cell size and surface hydrophobicity. The maximal cell diameter was for 1-BD (4.66 µm), resulting in an increase in the calculated cell surface area (68.19 µm²) and sedimentation velocity (1.31 µm/s). Cell surface hydrophobicity values by microbial adhesion to solvents (MATS) analysis for yeasts grown on bromoalkanes and glucose were significantly high, i.e. >80%. Similarly, water contact angles also indicate that the cell surface of yeast cells grown in glucose possess a relatively more hydrophilic cell surface (θ = 49.1°), whereas cells grown in 1-BD possess a more hydrophobic cell surface (θ = 90.7°). No significant change in emulsification activity or surface tension was detected in the cell-free supernatant. Thus adherence to the bromoalkane droplets by an increase in cell size and surface hydrophobicity leading to debromination of the substrate might be the strategy employed in bromoalkane utilization and growth by Y. lipolytica 3589. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


Aakanksha Vatsal, Smita S Zinjarde, Ameeta Ravi Kumar. Growth of a tropical marine yeast Yarrowia lipolytica NCIM 3589 on bromoalkanes: relevance of cell size and cell surface properties. Yeast (Chichester, England). 2011 Oct;28(10):721-32

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PMID: 21905092

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