Some observations in freeze-drying of recombinant bioluminescent Escherichia coli for toxicity monitoring

Man Bock Gu, Sue Hyung Choi, Sung Woo Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


A recombinant bioluminescent bacteria, containing a fabA::luxCDABE fusion gene, has been used to characterize freeze-drying methods, which may be conveniently used as a tool for the development of a portable biosensor. Through residual water, viability, biosensing activity and scanning electron microscopy analyses, the characteristics that four cryoprotectants, trehalose, sucrose, sorbitol, and mannitol, conferred on freeze-dried samples were elucidated, including the morphology, water content and activity of the cells. It was found that trehalose showed the best freeze-drying efficiency among the tested cryoprotectants and it might have a specific capacity limitation in protection of the cells during the freeze step. Humidity might result in damage to the cells, according to the viability, when exposed to air during storage, while the water remaining post freeze-drying showed good correlation with damage to the freeze-dried cells when under air-tight storage conditions. The results with other recombinant bioluminescent bacteria indicated that these findings might be general features of the freeze-drying processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-105
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Biotechnology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Jun 15
Externally publishedYes


  • Freeze-drying
  • Portable biosensor
  • Recombinant bioluminescent bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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