Production, Characterization and Bioemulsifying Activity of an Exopolysaccharide Produced by Sphingomonas sp. Isolated from Freshwater
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This study aimed to evaluate the emulsion stability of solutions containing exopolysaccharide and culture medium of a Sphingomonas sp. strain with various hydrophobic compounds. The exopolysaccharide characterized belongs to a sphingan group, however, not being a gellan gum as produced by certain Sphingomonas strains. In general, the emulsifying indexes found in this study were above 70% for gasoline, hexane, kerosene and used frying oil. Nonetheless, the best results were achieved in kerosene solutions, which showed an index of 80% after 24 h, remaining stable for more than 168 h in combinations with various EPS concentrations. Interestingly, diesel oil best results were singly achieved in solution pH of 11, showing an index of around 65%. Furthermore, hexane obtained an index of 100% after 24 h when culture medium was used. Thus, these findings highlight the use of EPS as a potential bioemulsifier agent to enhance hydrocarbon degradation and emulsification effects in environmental biotechnology.