Untangle inter-links between quorum sensing, c-di-GMP and EPS production for mixed-culture biofilm growth

This project aims to investigate inter-links of interspecies-level (QS) and intercellular-level (c-di-GMP) regulation and EPS production in anammox-heterotroph biofilms, using real-time gene sequencing analysis to identify commensal species.

Start date

01 November 2021

End date

31 October 2022


Mixed-culture biofilms have various application potentials in environmental biotechnology for pollutant removal, resource recovery and CO2 reduction. Ammonia is a major pollutant in municipal, industrial and agricultural wastewater and threatens the aquatic eco-systems if not properly removed. Untreated raw wastewater has been discharged directly into rivers more than three million hours in UK in 2020, urging the need to increase the wastewater ammonia treatment capacity and efficiency.

Anaerobic ammonia oxidation (anammox) can reduce energy consumption, CO2 emission and operational cost compared to conventional nitrification/denitrification process. However, some of the biggest challenges for anammox application are the slow growth rates, low biomass yield and high vulnerability in low-temperature and low-strength wastewater.

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