Immobilization of R. erythropolis in alginate-based artificial cells for simulated plaque degradation in aqueous media

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Taylor & Francis


Cholesterol degradation rates of free and immobilized Rhodococcus erythropolis (ATCC # 25544) were studied utilizing the bacterium’s cholesterol oxidase enzyme pathway to degrade cholesterol in an aqueous simulated non-calcified plaque solution. An L16 (45) Taguchi design was used to minimize the glycolipid bio-surfactant by-product in the growth medium, to improve bacterial viability in the immobilized state. As an expected outcome of miniaturization, there is a significant difference between the atomized (d = 850 ± 50 μm) and inkjet-bioprinted (d = 32 ± 5 μm) lumped kinetic degradation rates after 48 h (p = 0.029, α = 0.05) per ml of jetted alginate. Based on a biphasic cholesterol degradation model, at an initial bacterial cell density of Nlow = 4.53 × 108/ml, for an initial cholesterol concentration of 3 mg/ml, the percentage mass of metabolite degraded is 37.0% ± 0.42%, 57.8% ± 0.04% and 65.1% ± 0.01% for the free, atomized and inkjet immobilized bacteria, respectively.