Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 135, Issue 1, pp 12–15 | Cite as

On characterization of the growth of Escherichia coli in batch culture

  • Anne Kahru
  • Raivo Vilu
Original Papers


Several growth monitoring parameters, including adenine nucleotide contents, were measured during Escherichia coli K12 batch cultivation in mineral medium with glucose. The adenylate energy charge with its mean value of 0.83 remained roughly stable during growth. The total adenylate and ATP pools (nmol/mg dry weight), and also the individual cell volume changed with a pattern of two maxima at approximately 4 and 10 h of cultivation. After the exhaustion of the glucose from the growth medium the adenylate energy charge, the pools of ATP and total adenylate started to decrease marking the onset of the stationary growth phase. Our data indicate that actually there was only a limited period within the logarithmic growth phase during which the growth might have been balanced: during this period of 1.5 h different growth monitoring parameters (optical absorbance, cell number, total cell volume, and ATP content per ml) increased with almost equal rates. Moreover, as ATP pool and median cell volume during this short period were approximately constant, the culture might have been even in the steady state.

Key words

Escherichia coli K12 Batch culture Growth monitoring Adenylate content Balanced growth 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Atkinson DE (1968) The energy charge of the adenylate pool as a regulatory parameter. Interaction with feed-back modifiers. Biochemistry 7:4030–4034Google Scholar
  2. Bergmeyer HU, Bernt E, Schmidt F, Stork H (1974) d-Glucose determination with hexokinase and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. In: Bergmeyer HU (ed) Methods of enzymatic analysis, vol 3. Academic Press Inc, New York, pp 1196–1201Google Scholar
  3. Bossuyt R (1978) Usefulness of an ATP assay technique in evaluating the somatic cell content of milk. Milchwissenschaft 33:11–13Google Scholar
  4. Campbell A (1957) Synchronization of cell division. Bacteriol Rev 21:263–272Google Scholar
  5. Cole HA, Wimpenny JWT, Hughes DE (1967) The ATP pool in Escherichia coli. I. Measurement of the pool using a modified luciferase assay. Biochim Biophys Acta 143:445–453Google Scholar
  6. Donohue TJ, Bernlohr RW (1978) Effect of cultural conditions on the concentrations of metabolic intermediates during growth and sporulation of Bacillus licheniformis. J Bacteriol 135:363–372Google Scholar
  7. Fynn GH, Davison JA (1976) Adenine nucleotide pool and energy charge of a thyrothricin-producing strain of Bacillus brevis. J Gen Microbiol 94:68–74Google Scholar
  8. Hennen PE, Carter HB, Nunn WD (1978) Changes in macromolecular synthesis and nucleoside triphosphate levels during glycerol-induced growth stasis of Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol 136:929–935Google Scholar
  9. Holms WH, Hamilton JD, Robertson AG (1972) The rate of turnover of the adenine triphosphate pool of Escherichia coli growing aerobically in simple defined media. Arch Mikrobiol 83:95–109Google Scholar
  10. Kahru A, Liiders M, Vanatalu K, Vilu R (1982) Adenylate energy charge during batch culture of Thermoactinomyces vulgaris 42. Arch Microbiol 133:142–144Google Scholar
  11. Kubitschek HB (1958) Electronic counting and sizing of bacteria. Nature 182:234–235Google Scholar
  12. Markland FS, Wadkins CL (1966) Adenosine triphosphate-adenosine 5′-monophosphate phosphotransferase of bovine liver mitochondria. II. General kinetics and structural properties. J Biol Chem 241:4136–4145Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Kahru
    • 1
  • Raivo Vilu
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Chemical Physics and Biophysics of the Estonian Academy of SciencesTallinnUSSR

Personalised recommendations