Journal of Pure and Applied MicrobiologyVol. 7 No. 4

Feather Keratin Degradation by Stenotrophomonas sp. AB20 Screened from Poultry Waste

A.R. Birari1, K.P. Narkhede1* and R.C. Salunkhe2,3

1Department of Microbiology, M.J. College, Jalgaon - 425 002, India. 2Molecular Biology Unit, National Center for Cell Science, Pune, (MS) India. 3Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, (MS) India.

Received on 16 July 2013 and accepted on 30 September 2013



Microbial keratinase is biotechnologically important enzyme which has ability to hydrolyze highly rigid, strongly cross-linked structural polypeptides as well as recalcitrant and insoluble fibrous keratin proteins. In the present investigation, 25 feather waste dumped soil samples were screened for keratinolytic bacteria. Samples were enriched in mineral salt medium containing 1% feather followed by screening for protease activity using casein agar, milk agar and keratinase acitivity with feather meal agar. Amongst 82 bacterial isolates, 39 showed maximum proteolytic and 17 showed keratinolytic activity. Moreover isolate Stenotrophomonas sp. AB 20 showed highest potential in both the proteolytic and keratinolytic activities. In addition to this, isolate AB 20 showed more than 87.3% feather degradation within 6 days using submerged degradation process and crude enzyme activity was 52.82 U/ml. Identification of potential keratinolytic isolate trough 16S rRNA analysis revealed that it belongs to Stenotrophomonas sp. (Gene bank accession number KF201645). The isolate due to its potential keratinolytic activity may serve as a candidate for feather waste management and number of different biotechnological and industrial applications.

Keywords : Keratin waste, Feather hydrolysis, Bacterial Keratinase.