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Abstract

BIODEGRADATION OF PLASTIC BY BACILLUS SUBTILIS ISOLATED FROM POLYTHENE POLLUTED SOIL

T. Karthick*, B. Sumithra, K.P. Bhuvaneshwari, B. Gurujeya and J. Jaya Barath

ABSTRACT

Polyethylene is a commonly used raw material in manufacturing plastics, which are non-biodegradable substances that stay in the environment for an infinite period of time. According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), India generates nearly 56 lakh tonnes of plastic waste each year with only 60% of it being recycled and reused. The remaining 40% causes not just littering but it is hazardous to freshwater, marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Bacillus subtilis is the most efficient soil microbes which degrade polyethylene without the need of applying any external treatments and may provide an ecofriendly solution for management of plastic waste. Plastic degradation by microbes due to the activity of enzymes that cause cleavage of the polymer chains into monomers and oligomers. The degradation of plastic by Bacillus subtilis is analysed using liquid (shaker) culture method. Microbes degrade plastic more in 1 month period.

Keywords: Polyethylene, plastic, microbes, degradation, Bacillus subtilis, eco-friend, ecosystem.


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