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Vol. 3, No. 5, 2014; Pages: 318-325

A comparative study of commercially available plastic carry bag biodegradation by microorganisms isolated from hydrocarbon effluent enriched soil

Suman Mukherjee and Shamba Chatterjee

Department of Biotechnology, Haldia Institute of Technology, Haldia-721657, India.


Plastic  is a broad name given  to different polymers having high molecular weight and  that can be degraded by various processes. However, degradation by physical and  chemical  means  leads  to  innumerable  environmental  hazards.  On  the  other hand,  degradation  of  plastics  by  microorganisms  seems  to  be  more  effective, considering  their  abundance  in  the  environment,  their  specificity  in  attacking plastics  and  has  very  less  environmental  hazards. This  study  introspected  the comparative  extent  of  plastic  biodegradation  by  employing  one  fungal  species (Aspergillus  niger)  and  three  bacterial  species  (Bacillus  weihenstephanensis, Burkholderia cepacia & Escherichia coli) which were  isolated  from hydrocarbon enriched  soil  from Purba Medinipur, West Bengal. Amongst  the  isolates Bacillus weihenstephanensis  has  been  found  to  be  a  novel  candidate  having  sound biodegradation potential.

Keywords: Aspergillus niger, Burkholderia cepacia,  Bacillus weihenstephanensis, Escherichia coli, biodegradation, plastic.

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