Polyester-degrading actinomycetes isolated from the Touchien River of Taiwan

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Actinomycete strains were isolated from upstream and downstream regions of the Touchien River in Taiwan and screened for the ability to degrade poly(ethylene succinate) (PES), poly(∊-caprolactone) (PCL) and/or poly(β-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) by the clear-zone method. Out of 305 isolates 135 isolates were PHB-degraders (44.2%), 83 isolates were PCL-decomposers (27.2%), and 64 isolates could degrade PES (21.0%). Furthermore, 46 isolates could degrade both PHB and PCL (15%), 39 isolates could degrade both PHB and PES (12.8%), and 12 isolates could degrade the three polyesters used in this study. Based on the appearance of isolates, the major isolates belong to the Streptomyces genus (91.9%) and Micromonospora genus (8.1%).

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