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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Isolation of Bacteria and Fungi for the Hydrolysis of Phthalate and Terephthalate Esters

item Jackson Michael, - BRDC-BRADLEY UNIVERSITY
item Labeda, David
item Becker Lynne A,

Submitted to: Journal of Industrial Microbiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 2, 1996
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The wide use of polyesters in many applications from fabrics to soft drink bottles has resulted in an accumulation of these polyesters and their chemical building blocks in the environment. We have found bacterial and fungal strains that degrade, either partially or totally, many of these building blocks. Thus, by composting many of these materials with organisms found in nature many of them could be degraded, at least partially or totally.

Technical Abstract: Bacterial and fungal strains were isolated from enrichment cultures using diethylphthalate, diethylterephthalate, or ethylene glycol dibenzoate as sole carbon sources. Aureobacterium, Flavobacterium, and Micrococcus species were isolated from the diethylphthalate enrichments; Rhodococcus and Xanthomonas species were isolated from the diethylterephthalate enrichments; and Rhodococcus and Fusarium species were isolated from ethylene glycol dibenzoate enrichments. Only DEP was completely mineralized and the limitation in the mineralization of EtTPA was shown to be the hydrolysis of monoethylterephthalate.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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