Author(s): Shamala TR, Chandrashekar A, Vijayendra SV, Kshama L
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Abstract AIMS: The aim of the work was to develop efficient method to identify polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA)-producing species of Bacillus from numerous soil isolates of bacteria. Identification of the isolates and characterization of the PHA produced by strains positive on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was envisaged. METHODS AND RESULTS: Different bacteria isolated from soil were screened by PCR using two sets of primers designed for Bacillus megaterium. Amongst 23 isolates examined, the DNA of 12 isolates reacted positively with the primers giving amplicons identical in size to that obtained from B. megaterium. The isolates which were identified as strains of B. sphaericus, B. circulans, B. brevis and B. licheniformis, produced 11- 41\% of PHA in biomass, in sucrose-containing medium, over a growth period of 24-72 h. The nature of the PHA thus produced was analyzed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, gas chromatography and by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and found to contain polyhydroxy butyrate and polyhydroxyvalerate. CONCLUSIONS: The results indicate that most of our isolates from different species contained the B. megaterium type of PHA synthase. Bacillus licheniformis appeared to belong to another group as it did not react with both sets of primers. SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY: This study shows the universality of the B. megaterium type of PHA synthase in soil isolates of Bacillus. Some variations were also found.
This article was published in J Appl Microbiol
and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology