Rhamnolipid produced from agroindustrial wastes enhances hydrocarbon biodegradation in contaminated soil

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Benincasa, Maria
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A crude biosurfactant solution was produced by Pseudomonas aeruginosa growing on agroindustrial wastes as the substrate and used to study its effect on hydrocarbon biodegradation by the indigenous soil microflora under laboratory conditions. Two concentrations were studied at first and 1 mg of biosurfactant/g of soil showed to be the most efficient for the total petroleum hydrocarbon reduction, which reached 85% at the first 20 days in soil microcosms. Respirometric and microbial analyses showed that the biosurfactant added did not have toxic effects over the microbial population. The use of a biosurfactant for bioremediation has been limited because of its high cost production. Biosurfactants produced from cost-free by-products combines waste minimization with economic potential bioremediation process.
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Current Microbiology. New York: Springer, v. 54, n. 6, p. 445-449, 2007.