Polylactic acid (PLA), a bioplastic synthesized from lactic acid, has a broad range of applications owing to its excellent proprieties such as a high melting point, good mechanical strength, transparency, and ease of fabrication. However, the safe disposal of PLA is an emerging environmental problem: it resists microbial attack in environmental conditions, and the frequency of PLA-degrading microorganisms in soil is very low. To date, a limited number of PLA-degrading bacteria have been isolated, and most are actinomycetes. In this work, a method for the selection of rare actinomycetes with extracellular proteolytic activity was established, and the technique was used to isolate four mesophilic actinomycetes with the ability to degrade emulsified PLA in agar plates. All four strains—designated SO1.1, SO1.2, SNC, and SST—belong to the genus Amycolatopsis. The PLA-degrading capability of the four strains was investigated by testing their ability to assimilate lactic acid, fragment PLA polymers, and deteriorate PLA films. The strain SNC was the best PLA degrader—it was able to assimilate lactic acid, constitutively cleave PLA, and form a thick and widespread biofilm on PLA film. The activity of this strain extensively eroded the polymer, leading to a weight loss of 36% in one month in mesophilic conditions.

The degradative capabilities of new Amycolatopsis isolates on polylactic acid

Pini F.;
2019

Abstract

Polylactic acid (PLA), a bioplastic synthesized from lactic acid, has a broad range of applications owing to its excellent proprieties such as a high melting point, good mechanical strength, transparency, and ease of fabrication. However, the safe disposal of PLA is an emerging environmental problem: it resists microbial attack in environmental conditions, and the frequency of PLA-degrading microorganisms in soil is very low. To date, a limited number of PLA-degrading bacteria have been isolated, and most are actinomycetes. In this work, a method for the selection of rare actinomycetes with extracellular proteolytic activity was established, and the technique was used to isolate four mesophilic actinomycetes with the ability to degrade emulsified PLA in agar plates. All four strains—designated SO1.1, SO1.2, SNC, and SST—belong to the genus Amycolatopsis. The PLA-degrading capability of the four strains was investigated by testing their ability to assimilate lactic acid, fragment PLA polymers, and deteriorate PLA films. The strain SNC was the best PLA degrader—it was able to assimilate lactic acid, constitutively cleave PLA, and form a thick and widespread biofilm on PLA film. The activity of this strain extensively eroded the polymer, leading to a weight loss of 36% in one month in mesophilic conditions.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11586/290720
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