A new method for the study of microbiological decay of wood in a strictly anaerobic environment
G M Rogers, A A W Baecker
Recent work has suggested that strictly anaerobic bacteria may play a role in the biodeterioration of wood, particularly in aqueous environments. However, no suitable test methods exist for the investigation of this hypothesis. An aqueous minimal medium in specifically adapted conical flasks was sterilised, gassed using a 5.5% H2; 31.8% C02; 62.7% N2 gas mixture to remove oxygen and transferred to an anaerobic cabinet containing the same gas mixture. Sterile Pinus patula stakes were supported in the flasks of medium which were then inoculated using strictly anaerobic bacteria previously isolated from decayed Pinus patula. The flasks were then sealed, removed from the cabinet and mounted on an orbital shaker. The gas mixture was continually passed through the medium to maintain strict anaerobiosis during incubation at 37°C for three weeks. Samples were anaerobically removed from the stakes after three weeks and prepared for SEM. Biofilms progressively developed on the stakes. Decay patterns could be determined using this method.