Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

p. 691-700

Keratinolytic abilities of Micrococcus luteus from poultry waste

Laba, WojciechChoinska, AnnaRodziewicz, AnnaPiegza, Michal

<p>Keratinolytic microorganisms have become the subject of scientific interest due to their ability to biosynthesize specific keratinases and their prospective application in keratinic waste management. Among several bacterial classes, actinobacteria remain one of the most important sources of keratin-degrading strains, however members of the <italic>Micrococcaceae</italic> family are rarely scrutinized in regard to their applicatory keratinolytic potential. The tested <italic>Micrococcus</italic> sp. B1pz isolate from poultry feather waste was identified as <italic>M. luteus</italic>. The strain, grown in the medium with 1–2% chicken feathers and a yeast extract supplement, produced keratinases of 32 KU and lower level of proteases, 6 PU. It was capable to effectively decompose feathers or “soft” keratin of <italic>stratum corneum</italic>, in contrast to other “hard” hair-type keratins. The produced keratinolytic enzymes were mainly a combination of alkaline serine or thiol proteases, active at the optimum pH 9.4, 55 °C. Four main protease fractions of 62, 185, 139 and 229 kDa were identified in the crude culture fluid. The research on the auxiliary role of reducing factors revealed that reducing sulfur compounds could be applied in keratinolysis enhancement during enzymatic digestion of keratin, rather than in culture conditions. The presented <italic>M. luteus</italic> isolate exhibits a significant keratinolytic potential, which determines its feasible applicatory capacity towards biodegradation of poultry by-products or formulation of keratin-based feed components.</p>.(AU)

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