Journal of Polymers and the Environment

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 575–579 | Cite as

Communities of Microbial Enzymes Associated with Biodegradation of Plastics

  • Himani Bhardwaj
  • Richa Gupta
  • Archana Tiwari
Original Paper


Promiscuous and frequently deliberate release of plastics is responsible for growing environmental pollution. Low cost, efficient technology, eco-friendly treatments capable of reducing and even eliminating plastics, are developed by the researchers. Among biological agents, microbial enzymes are one of the most powerful tools for the biodegradation of plastics. Activity of biodegradation of most enzymes is higher in fungi than in bacteria. This review focuses on induced biodegradation rate of plastics by fungal and bacterial enzymes and the mode of action of biodegradation. Following a brief discussion of the enzymes and the factors affecting the production of enzymes, a descriptive survey is presented on various individual group of enzymes such as laccase, cutinase, hydrolase, esterase, protease and urease etc. and the microbial species that were predominant are Streptococcus, Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Staphylococcus comprise the bacterial species and the fungal species include Aspergillus, Penicillium, Phaenarochete, Pestalotiopsis etc. In plastics surface aspects, significant changes indicate its biodegradation.


Biodegradation Enzymes Environment Microbes Plastics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of BiotechnologyRajiv Gandhi Proudyogiki VishwavidyalayaBhopalIndia

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