Suppression of methanogenesis in hydrogen fermentation by intermittent feeding

Jeonghee Yun, Tae Gwan Kim, Kyung Suk Cho

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6 Scopus citations


This study investigated whether intermittent feeding by using a concentrated carbon source is an appropriate method for selective enrichment of hydrogenesis by means of methanogen suppression. In a conventional reactor fed continuously for 10 d, methanogens increased from 2.8 × 107 to 1.1 × 109 gene copy number (GCN)/mg-cell dry weight, and methane concentration in the resulting biogas was 5.8%. However, when a carbon source was intermittently supplied for 10 d to the reactor, the number of methanogens was reduced 98.9% from 2.77 × 107 to 1.2 × 103 GCN/mg-cell dry weight, and methane was not detected during this period of intermittent feeding. Intermittent feeding shifted the dominants in the reactor from Clostridiaceae (70.5%) and Lactobacillaceae (11.0%) to Acetobacteraceae (62.0%) and Clostridiaceae (38.0%). In the reactor operated in continuous feeding mode after intermittent feeding, methane concentration was below 0.3% and the portion of methanogens in the bacterial community was maintained below 0.2%. These results suggest that the intermittent feeding of a carbon source during hydrogen production processes is a suitable method to suppress the activity of methanogens.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1458-1467
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Environmental Science and Health - Part A Toxic/Hazardous Substances and Environmental Engineering
Issue number14
StatePublished - 6 Dec 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT and future Planning (NRF-2012R1A2A2A03046724).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Biohydrogen
  • hydrogenesis
  • inhibition
  • intermittent feeding
  • methanogen


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