Production of melanin pigment fromPseudomonas stutzeriisolated from red seaweedHypnea musciformis

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Hypnea musciformis red seaweed is popularly known to produce carrageenan was collected from the Gulf of Mannar, India. Strain HMGM-7 [MTCC 11712] was isolated from the surface of this seaweed, which was capable of producing an extracellular black-coloured polymeric pigment. Based on phenotypic characterization and 16S rDNA sequencing, the strain HMGM-7 was identified as Pseudomonas stutzeri. Biophysical characterization by UV–visible, FT-IR, EPR and XRD spectroscopic studies confirmed the pigment as melanin. Further chemical characterization showed that it was acid-resistant, alkali-soluble and alkali-insoluble in most of the organic solvents and distilled water. To our knowledge, this is a first report on a marine Pseudomonas stutzeri strain producing significant amounts of melanin of about 6·7 g l−1 without L-tyrosine supplementation in the sea-water production medium.Significance and Impact of the Study: This investigation reports a marine Pseudomonas stutzeri strain HMGM-7 [MTCC 11712] that produces significant quantities of melanin (6·7 g l−1) in sea-water medium without the supplementation of L-tyrosine. The confirmation of the produced melanin was carried out by various chemical and physical characterization studies. The isolated melanin may find potential application for use in cosmetic and/or pharmaceutical industries.

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