Archives of microbiology

The influence of cultivation methods on Shewanella oneidensis physiology and proteome expression.

PMID 18030449


High-throughput analyses that are central to microbial systems biology and ecophysiology research benefit from highly homogeneous and physiologically well-defined cell cultures. While attention has focused on the technical variation associated with high-throughput technologies, biological variation introduced as a function of cell cultivation methods has been largely overlooked. This study evaluated the impact of cultivation methods, controlled batch or continuous culture in bioreactors versus shake flasks, on the reproducibility of global proteome measurements in Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. Variability in dissolved oxygen concentration and consumption rate, metabolite profiles, and proteome was greater in shake flask than controlled batch or chemostat cultures. Proteins indicative of suboxic and anaerobic growth (e.g., fumarate reductase and decaheme c-type cytochromes) were more abundant in cells from shake flasks compared to bioreactor cultures, a finding consistent with data demonstrating that "aerobic" flask cultures were O2 deficient due to poor mass transfer kinetics. The work described herein establishes the necessity of controlled cultivation for ensuring highly reproducible and homogenous microbial cultures. By decreasing cell to cell variability, higher quality samples will allow for the interpretive accuracy necessary for drawing conclusions relevant to microbial systems biology research.