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Curr Microbiol. 2007 Feb;54(2):136-41. Epub 2007 Jan 5.

Biosurfactant production by antarctic facultative anaerobe Pantoea sp. during growth on hydrocarbons.

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  • 1Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, The Stephan Angeloff Institute of Microbiology, Sofia, Bulgaria.


The facultative anaerobe Pantoea sp. strain A-13, isolated from ornithogenic soil of Dewart Island (Frazier Islands), Antarctica, produced glycolipid biosurfactants when grown on n-paraffins or kerosene as the sole source of carbon and energy. Hemolysis of erythrocytes, growth inhibition of Bacillus subtilis, and thin-layer chromatography studies have suggested that the secreted glycolipids are rhamnolipids. Glycolipids produced by kerosene-grown cells decreased the surface tension at the air-water interface to 30 mN/m and possessed a low critical micelle concentration value of 40 mg/l, which indicated high surface activity. They efficiently emulsified aromatic hydrocarbons, kerosene, and n-paraffins. Biosurfactant production contributed to an increase in cell hydrophobicity, which correlated with increased growth of the strain on tested hydrocarbons. According to the results, the Antarctic biosurfactant-producing strain Pantoea sp. A-13 appears to be valuable source for application in accelerated environmental bioremediation.

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