Use of surface enhanced blocking (SEB) electrodes for microbial cell lysis in flow-through devices.

PloS one (2014-07-18)
Abdossamad Talebpour, Robert Maaskant, Aye Aye Khine, Tino Alavie

By simultaneously subjecting microbial cells to high amplitude pulsed electric fields and flash heating of the cell suspension fluid, effective release of intracellular contents was achieved. The synergistic effect of the applied electric field and elevated temperature on cell lysis in a flow-through device was demonstrated for Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, and Mycobacterium species. The resulting lysate is suitable for downstream nucleic acid amplification and detection without requiring further preparation. The lysis chamber employs surface enhanced blocking electrodes which possess an etched micro-structured surface and a thin layer of dielectric metal oxide which provides a large effective area and blocks transmission of electrical current. The surface enhanced blocking electrodes enable simultaneous suppression of the rapid onset of electric field screening in the bulk of the cell suspension medium and avoidance of undesired electrochemical processes at the electrode-electrolyte interface. In addition the blocking layer ensures the robustness of the cell lysis device in applications involving prolonged flow-through processing of the microbial cells.

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Glass beads, acid-washed, ≤106 μm (−140 U.S. sieve)

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