Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 22, Issue 20, pp 15690–15702 | Cite as

Investigating the degradation process of kraft lignin by β-proteobacterium, Pandoraea sp. ISTKB

  • Madan Kumar
  • Jyoti Singh
  • Manoj Kumar Singh
  • Anjali Singhal
  • Indu Shekhar ThakurEmail author
Research Article


The present study investigates the kraft lignin (KL) degrading potential of novel alkalotolerant Pandoraea sp. ISTKB utilizing KL as sole carbon source. The results displayed 50.2 % reduction in chemical oxygen demand (COD) and 41.1 % decolorization after bacterial treatment. The maximum lignin peroxidase (LiP) and manganese peroxidase (MnP) activity detected was 2.73 and 4.33 U ml−1, respectively, on day 3. The maximum extracellular and intracellular laccase activities observed were 1.32 U ml−1 on day 5 and 4.53 U ml−1 on day 4, respectively. The decolorization and degradation was maximum on day 2. Further, it registered an increase with the production of extracellular laccase. This unusual trend of decolorization and degradation was studied using various aromatic compounds and dyes. SEM and FTIR results indicated significant change in surface morphology and functional group composition during the course of degradation. Gas chromatography and mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) analysis confirmed KL degradation by emergence of new peaks and the identification of low molecular weight aromatic intermediates in treated sample. The degradation of KL progressed through the generation of phenolic intermediates. The identified intermediates implied the degradation of hydroxyphenyl, ferulic acid, guaiacyl, syringyl, phenylcoumarane, and pinoresinol components commonly found in lignin. The degradation, decolorization, and GC-MS analysis indicated potential application of the isolate Pandoraea sp. ISTKB in treatment of lignin-containing pollutants and KL valorization.


Kraft lignin Pandoraea sp. ISTKB Biodegradation FTIR GC-MS Dyes 



The authors are grateful to the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi, Government of India, for providing research grants. We also thank Dr. Ajai Kumar and Dr. Manoj Pratap Singh (Advanced Instrumentation Research Facility—AIRF, JNU, New Delhi) for the GC-MS and FTIR analysis. We are thankful to Niharika Agrawal (NIT, Raipur) for her support in the research work.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

11356_2015_4771_MOESM1_ESM.doc (575 kb)
ESM 1 (DOC 575 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Madan Kumar
    • 1
  • Jyoti Singh
    • 1
  • Manoj Kumar Singh
    • 1
  • Anjali Singhal
    • 1
  • Indu Shekhar Thakur
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.School of Environmental SciencesJawaharlal Nehru UniversityNew DelhiIndia

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