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Microbial keratinase and its potential application in the management of tannery hair waste

Onyuka, A., Bates, M. P., Covington, A. D. and Antunes, A. P. M. (2014) Microbial keratinase and its potential application in the management of tannery hair waste. Journal of the American Leather Chemists Association. 109, pp. 425-430. 0002-9726.

Item Type: Article
Abstract: Up to 40 tons of solid hair waste can be generated during the industrial leather manufacturing process posing disposal problems. Composting is considered a viable technology to recycle the hair waste for application in agriculture. However, due to its constituent protein, keratin hair is remarkably resistant to degradation under natural conditions. The aim of this study was to isolate keratin degrading bacteria and evaluate their ability to degrade hair as a preliminary study towards developing a biocatalyst to improve hair degradation during composting. Subsequently, a keratinolytic microorganism was isolated from a nutrient alkaline culture (pH 11) with bovine hair as the source of carbon and nitrogen. The microorganism, identified as belonging to the Bacillus species grew optimally in the temperature range of 40 – 50°C. The partially purified microbial keratinase exhibited broad substrate specificity at pH range 7.5 – 10. The pH and temperature of optimum activity was determined at 9.0 and 50°C, respectively. Scanning electron microscopy assessment of the hair samples showed complete fragmentation of the structure after incubation with the microbial keratinase. Hence, the microbial keratinase has greater potential application as inoculant to enhance biodegradation of tannery solid hair waste during the composting process.
Subjects: T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering > TD896 Industrial and factory wastes
T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering > TD783 Municipal refuse. Solid wastes > TD791 Refuse and refuse disposal > TD796.5 Biodegradation. Compost
T Technology > TS Manufactures > TS965 Leather technology > TS965.5 Tanning
Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR75 Bacteria
Creators: Onyuka, Arthur, Bates, Margaret P, Covington, Anthony D and Antunes, A Paula M
Funders or Sponsors: SITA Trust
Publisher: American Leather Chemists Association
Faculties, Divisions and Institutes: University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Research Group > Institute for Creative Leather Technologies
University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > School of Science and Technology (2010-2016)
University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Research Centre > China and Emerging Economies Centre
Research Institutes > Institute for Creative Leather Technologies
Date: December 2014
Date Type: Publication
Page Range: pp. 425-430
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of the American Leather Chemists Association
Volume: 109
Language: English
ISSN: 0002-9726
Status: Published / Disseminated
Refereed: Yes
Related URLs:
URI: http://nectar.northampton.ac.uk/id/eprint/7179

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