Effects of Ethyl Lauroyl Arginate (LAE) on Biofilm Detachment: Shear Rate, Concentration, and Dosing Time

Peng Fei Sun, Taek Seung Kim, So Young Ham, Yong Sun Jang, Hee Deung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Biofilm formation is one of the main obstacles in membrane treatment. The non-oxidizing biocide ethyl lauroyl arginate (LAE) is promising for mitigating biofilm development on membrane surfaces. However, the operating conditions of LAE and their impact on biofilm detachment are not comprehensively understood. In this study, a real-time in vitro flow cell system was utilized to observe biofilm dispersal caused by the shear rate, concentration, and treatment time of LAE. This confirmed that the biofilm was significantly reduced to 68.2% at a shear rate of 3.42 s−1 due to the increased physical lifting force. LAE exhibited two different mechanisms for bacterial inactivation and biofilm dispersal. Biofilms treated with LAE at sub-growth inhibitory concentrations for a longer time could effectively detach the biofilm formed on the surface of the glass slides, which can be attributed to the increased motility of microorganisms. However, a high concentration (i.e., bactericidal concentration) of LAE should be seriously considered because of the inactivated sessile bacteria and their residual debris remaining on the surface. This study sheds light on the effect of LAE on biofilm detachment and provides insights into biofouling mitigation during the membrane process.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2158
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jul 1


  • biofilm detachment
  • biofouling
  • ethyl lauroyl arginate
  • flow cell
  • non-oxidizing biocide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Biochemistry
  • Aquatic Science
  • Water Science and Technology


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