Plastic bags from garbage were collected and fungi were isolated from these bags and their degradation potentialities of LDPE were screened. Their potentialities were measured by weight loss method, molecular weight reduction by viscosity meter method, surface morphology by SEM and CO2 evolution method. Both treated by ethanol or untreated LDPE were employed. It was observed that out of three fungal isolates, F1 isolate showed maximum degradation while untreated sheets were also degraded by this isolate in more or less percentage of weight loss. Surface morphology analysis under SEM showed degraded areas on F1 treated LDPE. FT-IR analysis showed that F1 influenced the carbonyl group and C=C group formation in polymer. Lipase enzyme was found to be secreted by F1 fungus in culture. The F1 isolate was identified molecularly as Penicillium simplicissimum strain Bar2. This fungus isolate may be used for LDPE waste plastic management.
The authors are grateful to the Principal , RKMVC College, Rahara for giving laboratory facility. The English language was revised by Adity Ghosh, Department of English, Pondicherry University, India.