Biosynthesis of poly-3-hydroxybutyrate by Rhodococcus pyridinivorans using unrelated carbon sources

Naima Khan, Nazia Jamil


Background: Polyhydroxyalkanoates are intracellular polymers comparable to synthetic plastic in their thermostable and elastomeric properties. PHAs are produced by bacteria under various nutrient – nitrogen – stress conditions.

Methods: Bacteria were isolated from hot water springs of Tatta Pani Kashmir and Karachi Mangrove forest Pakistan. Polyhydroxyalkanoate detection agar was used to isolates PHA producing bacteria and several carbon sources such as glucose, glycerol and palmitic acid were used for relative biomass and biopolymer productions. PHA was extracted by solvent extraction method using sodium hypochlorite and chloroform. Extracted polymer was characterized by Fourier transfer infrared spectroscopy (FTIR).

Results: Rhodococcus pyridinivorans NK19 (KY703220) produced up to 60% PHA with glucose, 40% with palmitic acid and 58% with glycerol as carbon sources. FTIR spectrum confirmed the polymer produced as poly -3, hydroxybutyrate. A peak at 1720 cm -1 of FTIR confirmed the presence of PHB monomers in the polymer extracted.

Conclusion: Rhodococcus pyridinivorans NK19 produced short chain length PHA interchangeably known as P3HB while utilizing unrelated carbon sources up to 60%.   

Keywords: Glycerol; Fatty acids degrading bacteria; FTIR; Palmitic acid

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