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A turbidostat is a continuous culture device, similar to a chemostat or an auxostat, which has feedback between the turbidity of the culture vessel and the dilution rate[1][2]. The theoretical relationship between growth in a chemostat and growth in a turbidostat is somewhat complex, in part because it is similar. A chemostat technically has a fixed volume and flow rate - thus a fixed dilution rate. When the cells are uniform and at equilibrium, operation of a chemostat and turbidostat should be identical. It is only when classical chemostat assumptions are violated (for instance, out of equilibrium; or the cells are mutating) that a turbidostat is functionally different. One case may be while cells are growing at their maximum growth rate, in which case it is difficult to set a chemostat to the appropriate constant dilution rate [3].

While most turbidostats use a spectrophotometer/turbidometer to measure the optical density for control purposes, there exist other options, such as electrical conductivity [4].


  1. ^ Bryson V, Szybalski W (1952). "Microbial selection". Science 18 (115): 45-51. PMID 14950177.
  2. ^ Sorgeloos P, Van Outryve E,Persoone G, Cattoir-Reynaerts A (1976). "New Type of Turbidostat with Intermittent Determination of Cell Density Outside the Culture Vessel". Applied and Environmental Microbiology 31 (3): 327-331.
  3. ^ Watson TG (1972). "The Present Status and Future Prospect of the Turbidostat". Journal of Applied Chemistry and Biotechnology 22 (2): 229-243.
  4. ^ Markx GH, Davey CL, Kell DB (1991). "The Permittistat: A novel type of turbidostat". Journal of General Microbiology 137 (4): 735-743.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Turbidostat". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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