Int J Biol Sci 2014; 10(5):550-565. doi:10.7150/ijbs.9028 This issue
Department of Environmental Engineering, Konkuk University, Seoul-143-701, Korea.
Membrane biofouling is widely acknowledged as the most frequent adverse event in wastewater treatment systems resulting in significant loss of treatment efficiency and economy. Different strategies including physical cleaning and use of antimicrobial chemicals or antibiotics have been tried for reducing membrane biofouling. Such traditional practices are aimed to eradicate biofilms or kill the bacteria involved, but the greater efficacy in membrane performance would be achieved by inhibiting biofouling without interfering with bacterial growth. As a result, the search for environmental friendly non-antibiotic antifouling strategies has received much greater attention among scientific community. The use of quorum quenching natural compounds and enzymes will be a potential approach for control of membrane biofouling. This approach has previously proven useful in diseases and membrane biofouling control by triggering the expression of desired phenotypes. In view of this, the present review is provided to give the updated information on quorum quenching compounds and elucidate the significance of quorum sensing inhibition in control of membrane biofouling.
Keywords: quorum quenching, quorum sensing inhibition, natural compounds, wastewater treatment, biofouling, membrane bioreactor.