Study on biodegradability a biosurfactant

Over the last few years, the global biosurfactant market has raised due to the increasing awareness among consumers, for the use of biological or bio‐based products. Because of their composition, it can be speculated that these are more biocompatible and more biodegradable than their chemical homologous. However, at the moment, no studies exist in the literature about the biodegradability of biosurfactants.
In a recent study published in Journal of Surfactants and Detergents ( a biosurfactant contained in a crude extract, obtained from a corn wet‐milling industry stream that ferments spontaneously in the presence of lactic acid bacteria, was subjected to a biodegradation study, without addition of external microbial biomass, under different conditions of temperature (5–45 °C), biodegradation time (15–55 days), and pH (5–7). For that, a Box–Behnken factorial design was applied, which allowed to predict the percentage of biodegradation for the biosurfactant contained in the crude extract, between the range of the independent variables selected in the study, obtaining biodegradation values between 3 and 80%. The percentage of biodegradation for the biosurfactant was calculated based on the increase in the surface tension of samples of the crude extract. Furthermore, it was also possible to predict the variation in t1/2 for the biosurfactant (time to achieve the 50% of biodegradation) under different conditions.

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