3343 Phage Remediation of Microbe Induced Corrosion

Tuesday, October 7, 2008: 1:25 PM
Virginia City I (Flamingo Las Vegas)
Dr. Neil S. Summer , Phage Biocontrol, Caldwell, TX
Dr. Elizabeth J. Summer , Center for Phage Technology,, College Station, TX
Dr. Jason Gill , Center for Phage Technology,, College Station, TX
Dr. Ry Young , Center for Phage Technology,, College Station, TX
Remediating key sulfate-reducing bacteria with their natural predators, bacteriophages (“phage”), would serve to increase the reliability and lifetime of pipelines and decrease the usage of biocides. Such a new application may find utility wherever microbially induced corrosion is a concern, not only in the oil and gas industry, but in any system in which biocorrosion is occurring. Phages are ubiquitous, natural, water-borne predators of bacteria. In general, there are many different phages that recognize and attack any particular bacterial host, but would be harmless to all other bacteria and other types of cells. In a typical phage infection cycle, a single phage injects its DNA or RNA into a bacterial cell, starting a program that ends with the bursting of the host cell and the release of about 100 new phage particles in 20 - 60 min.
Phages that target the sulfate-reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio vulgaris have been isolated and found to be effective in destroying these ubiquitous corrosion-inducing bacteria. It is postulated that a “cocktail” of several of these phages, could be targeted against the D. vulgaris biofilms, where active corrosion occurs in a pipeline, and thus reduce or eliminate the biocorrosion.