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Materials 2016, 9(5), 367; doi:10.3390/ma9050367

Oxidized Polyethylene Wax as a Potential Carbon Source for PHA Production

1
School of Biology, Chemistry and Forensic Science, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton WV1 1LY, UK
2
Centre of Polymer Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, Zabrze 41-800, Poland
3
Department of Chemical Organic Technology and Petrochemistry, Silesian University of Technology, Gliwice 44-100, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Naozumi Teramoto
Received: 23 February 2016 / Revised: 11 April 2016 / Accepted: 9 May 2016 / Published: 13 May 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodegradable and Bio-Based Polymers)
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Abstract

We report on the ability of bacteria to produce biodegradable polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) using oxidized polyethylene wax (O-PEW) as a novel carbon source. The O-PEW was obtained in a process that used air or oxygen as an oxidizing agent. R. eutropha H16 was grown for 48 h in either tryptone soya broth (TSB) or basal salts medium (BSM) supplemented with O-PEW and monitored by viable counting. Study revealed that biomass and PHA production was higher in TSB supplemented with O-PEW compared with TSB only. The biopolymers obtained were preliminary characterized by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), gel permeation chromatography (GPC), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The detailed structural evaluation at the molecular level was performed by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS). The study revealed that, when TSB was supplemented with O-PEW, bacteria produced PHA which contained 3-hydroxybutyrate and up to 3 mol % of 3-hydroxyvalerate and 3-hydroxyhexanoate co-monomeric units. The ESI-MS/MS enabled the PHA characterization when the content of 3-hydroxybutyrate was high and the appearance of other PHA repeating units was very low. View Full-Text
Keywords: polyhydroxyalkanoates; oxidized PE wax; medium chain length PHA (mcl-PHA); Ralstonia eutropha H16; mass spectrometry polyhydroxyalkanoates; oxidized PE wax; medium chain length PHA (mcl-PHA); Ralstonia eutropha H16; mass spectrometry
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Radecka, I.; Irorere, V.; Jiang, G.; Hill, D.; Williams, C.; Adamus, G.; Kwiecień, M.; Marek, A.A.; Zawadiak, J.; Johnston, B.; Kowalczuk, M. Oxidized Polyethylene Wax as a Potential Carbon Source for PHA Production. Materials 2016, 9, 367.

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