Environmental biology

Antibacterial potency of housefly larvae extract from sewage sludge through bioconversion

Chaocheng Zheng , Lixiang Zhou


Received December 07, 2012,Revised March 04, 2013, Accepted , Available online September 06, 2013

Volume ,2013,Pages 1897-1905

Use of the fly to convert sewage sludge into nutrient-rich soil conditioner and amendment is an attractive approach for sludge bioconversion. During this process, fecal coliforms, an indicating pathogen, in sludge were reduced to 5.3×102 most probable number/g dry solid from initial 3.32×106 MPN/g dry solid. It was also found that the extract of larvae grown in sludge during bioconversion have an observable inhibitory effect against bacteria compared to larvae grown in wheat bran as measured by minimum bacterial concentration tests. In vitro antimicrobial assay tests over time also showed that the extract had strong inhibitory efficiencies of ca. 99% against Bacillus cereus, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Serratia marcescens, while the efficiency was 69% and 57% against Bacillus subtilis and Klebsiella pneumoniae, respectively. The observed pathogenic bacterial cell membrane damage was found to be responsible for the phenomenon mentioned above, with nuclear acids leaching out quickly and alkaline phosphatase increasing in the outer membrane, followed by an increase of β-galactosidase in the inner membrane. Clearly, housefly larvae extract from sewage sludge through bioconversion possesses antibacterial potency against pathogenic bacteria.

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