Dec 1, 1975

Kinetics of a bacterial culture growth: validity of the affinity rule in biological systems

Applied Microbiology
A Marchand, E Dulos


The kinetic study of a process is usually performed by measuring a convenient intensive property, P, as a function of time. The "affinity rule" states that, when a given process takes place under different external constraints (e.g., different temperatures, pressures, pH values, etc.), the various P versus time curves are related by an affinity transformation parallel to the time axis: in other words the P versus log time curves are parallel and can be superimposed by translation. The validity of the rule has been extensively tested in chemical and physiochemical processes, but there is no evidence as yet that it extends to biological systems. The present paper shows that the rule is indeed valid for the kinetics of growth of an Escherichia coli culture at various temperatures and pH values. More extended experiments are necessary to prove or disprove the general validity of the rule in biological systems, but its practical interest is evident: whenever it is valid it will be possible, from a very small number of measurements, to predict the complete behavior of the system in a number of various external conditions

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