Detection of Cyanobacteria in Eutrophic Water Using a Portable Electrocoagulator and NanoGene Assay

Eun Hee Lee, Beelee Chua, Ahjeong Son

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


We have demonstrated the detection of cyanobacteria in eutrophic water samples using a portable electrocoagulator and NanoGene assay. The electrocoagulator is designed to preconcentrate cyanobacteria from water samples prior to analysis via NanoGene assay. Using Microcystis aeruginosa laboratory culture and environmental samples (cell densities ranging from 1.7 × 105 to 4.1 × 106 and 6.5 × 103 to 6.6 × 107 cells·mL-1, respectively), the electrocoagulator was evaluated and compared with a conventional centrifuge. Varying the operation duration from 0 to 300 s with different cell densities was first investigated. Preconcentration efficiencies (obtained via absorbance measurement) and dry cell weight of preconcentrated cyanobacteria were then obtained and compared. For laboratory samples at cell densities from 3.2 × 105 to 4.1 × 106 cells·mL-1, the preconcentration efficiencies of electrocoagulator appeared to be stable at ∼60%. At lower cell densities (1.7 and 2.2 × 105 cells·mL-1), the preconcentration efficiencies decreased to 33.9 ± 0.2 and 40.4 ± 5.4%, respectively. For environmental samples at cell densities of 2.7 × 105 and 6.6 × 107 cells·mL-1, the electrocoagulator maintained its preconcentration efficiency at ∼60%. On the other hand, the centrifuge's preconcentration efficiencies decreased to nondetectable and below 40%, respectively. This shows that the electrocoagulator outperformed the centrifuge when using eutrophic water samples. Finally, the compatibility of the electrocoagulator with the NanoGene assay was verified via the successful detection of the microcystin synthetase D (mcyD) gene in environmental samples. The viability of the electrocoagulator as an in situ compatible alternative to the centrifuge is also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1375-1385
Number of pages11
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 6 Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2017R1A2B4005133 and NRF-2015R1D1A1A01060317).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 American Chemical Society.


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