Biodegradation of polymers at temperatures up to 130ºC

G. Antranikian, A Rudiger, F Canganella, M Klingeberg, A Sunna

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Extreme thermophilic and hyperthermophilic microorganisms are those which are adapted to grow at temperatures from 70 to 110 degrees C. Most of these exotic microorganisms are heterotrophic and are capable of attacking various polymeric substrates such as starch, hemicellulose, and proteins. Only recently, a number of novel extracellular enzymes like alpha-amylase, pullulanase, xylanase, and proteinase have been purified and studied in detail. By applying gene technology it was also possible to purify heat-stable enzymes after expression of their genes in mesophilic hosts. These novel enzymes are in general characterized by temperature optima around 90-105 degrees C and a high degree of thermostability. Enzymic activity is still detectable even at 130 degrees C and in the presence of detergents. Due to the remarkable properties of these enzymes, they are also of interest for biotechnological applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)661-669
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Macromolecular Science - Pure and Applied Chemistry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Workshop on Controlled Life-Cycle of Polymeric Materials - Biodegradable Polymers and Recycling - STOCKHOLM, Sweden
Duration: 21 Apr 199423 Apr 1994

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