Production and characterization of polyhydroxyalkanoates from industrial waste using soil bacterial isolates.
Nowadays when conventional plastic is being looked as a menace, the possibility of it being replaced with polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) which are biodegradable, environment friendly and biocompatible thermoplastics is not remote. PHAs are a fascinating group of biopolyesters stored within the cytoplasm of numerous bacterial cells as energy and carbon reserves. PHAs signify the best promising biological substitute to certain conventional petrochemical plastics which have wide range of applications in different industries such as biomedical sector, packaging, toners for printing, and adhesives for coating, etc. In the present study, PHAs producing bacterial strains were screened by Sudan black B staining and confirmed by Nile blue A staining. Out of forty bacterial strains showing positive results, six bacterial strains exhibited comparatively higher PHAs production. The highest PHAs producing bacterial strain was identified using 16s rRNA sequencing. Optimization of process parameters was performed by using one factor at a time (OFAT) approach. The isolated bacterium was able to synthesize PHAs when various agro-industrial wastes such as domestic kitchen waste, mixed fruit pulp, sugarcane molasses, and waste flour from bread factory were screened as a carbon substrate in the growth medium. The results showed accumulation of 44.5% PHAs of cell dry weight using domestic kitchen waste as carbon substrate. The characterization of biopolymers was performed using FTIR and XRD analysis. The commercial exploitation of results of this study may serve twin purposes of addressing the challenge of high production cost of PHAs being the major constraint in replacing petro-based plastics as well as address the problem of disposal of recurring domestic kitchen waste and other agro-industrial waste.