Evaluation of two autoinducer-2 quantification methods for application in marine environments

Tian-Nyu Wang, Anna H. Kaksonen, Pei-Ying Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This study evaluated two methods, namely high performance liquid chromatography with fluorescence detection (HPLC-FLD) and Vibrio harveyi BB170 bioassay, for autoinducer-2 (AI-2) quantification in marine samples. Using both methods, the study also investigated the stability of AI-2 in varying pH, temperature and media, as well as quantified the amount of AI-2 signals in marine samples.HPLC-FLD method showed a higher level of reproducibility and precision compared to V. harveyi BB170 bioassay. Alkaline pH > 8 and high temperature (> 37°C) increased the instability of AI-2. The AI-2 concentrations in seawater were low, ca. 3.2-27.6 pmol l-1 whereas 8- week old marine biofilm grew on an 18.8 cm2 substratum accumulated ca. 0.207 nmol of AI-2.Both methods have pros and cons for AI-2 quantification in marine samples. Regardless, both methods reported a ubiquitous presence of AI-2 in both planktonic and biomass fractions of seawater, as well as in marine biofilm.In this study, AI-2 signals were for the first time enumerated in marine samples to reveal the ubiquitous presence of AI-2 in this environment. The findings suggest a possible role of AI-2 in biofilm formation in marine environment, and the contribution of AI-2 in biofilm-associated problems such as biofouling and biocorrosion. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1469-1479
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Applied Microbiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 13 2018

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): URF/1/2982-01-01
Acknowledgements: The work was funded by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Competitive Research Grant 2017 (URF/1/2982-01-01) awarded to Pei-Ying Hong. CSIRO Land and Water is thanked for support to Anna Kaksonen.


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