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Isolation & identification of bacteria for the treatment of brown crab (Cancer pagurus) waste to produce chitinous material.

Journal of applied microbiology (2015-02-04)
C Harkin, W M Brück, C Lynch
ABSTRACT

To isolate bacteria from soil for microbial pretreatment of brown crab (Cancer pagurus) shell waste and the production of chitin. Isolates were screened for protease enzymes and acid production in order to facilitate the removal of protein and calcium carbonate fractions from brown crab shell to yield a chitinous material. Selected isolates were applied in various combinations in successive, two-step fermentations with brown crab shell waste. These isolates were identified as: Exiguobacterium spp. (GenBank accession number: KP050496), Bacillus cereus (GenBank accession number: KP050499), B. subtilis (GenBank accession number: KP050498), Bacillus licheniformis (GenBank accession number: KP050497), Pseudomonas migulae (GenBank accession number: KP050501), Pseudomonas spp. (GenBank accession number: KP050500), Pseudomonas spp. (GenBank accession number: KP050502), Arthrobacter luteolus (GenBank accession number: KP050503), Lactobacillus spp. (GenBank accession number: KP072000) and Enterococcus spp. (GenBank accession number: KP071999). Successive two-step fermentations with isolates in certain combinations resulted in a demineralization of >94% and the extraction of a crude chitin fraction from brown crab processing waste. The highest demineralization, 98·9% was achieved when isolates identified as B. cereus and Pseudomonas spp. were used in combination. The transfer of fermentations to a larger scale requires further research for optimization. The successful application of these isolates in successive two-step fermentation of brown crab shell waste to extract chitin means with further research into optimization and scale up, this chitin extraction process may be applied on an industrial scale and provide further commercial value from brown crab shell waste.

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