Using Genomics to Understand Disinfection with Silver

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Disinfection with silver increasingly is being considered as an alternative to disinfection with oxidizing agents in certain water quality protection scenarios. The objective of this study was to identify the genes involved in the toxic response of Escherichia coliT when challenged with silver. Whole genome Affymetrix microarray results demonstrated that silver resistance was related to zinc resistance genes as well as copper resistance genes. Specifically, the transcription of periplasmic zinc-binding protein gene cluster including the regulatory genes (zraRS) and protein gene (zraP) were upregulated during early exponential phase in E. coliT. The microarray result also suggested the energy used to resist silver toxicity would come from repressing flagellin and chemotaxis gene expressions.

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