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Enhanced biodegradation of polyethylene by development of a consortium

Mixed cultures may be more useful than individual cultures for biodegradation studies since they grow in symbiosis and enhance the degradation process. The potential strains of six microorganisms, able to utilize polyethylene (PE) as the sole carbon source were selected for the development of a consortium. In vitro biodegradation efficiency of the consortium for degradation of PE was tested by scanning electron microscope (SEM)-Energy Dispersive X-ray Analyzer (EDAX), to analyze the growth of the microbial cultures on the PE films and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrophotometer (FTIR) to reveal the shifting of existing chemical bonds and formation of new bonds as a result of microbial activity. The degraded products of PE were determined by Gas Chromatography- Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS)

Author(s): V. Mahalakshmi and S. Abubakker Siddiq

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