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Enhancing compost quality by using whey-grown biosurfactant-producing bacteria as inocula

Jahanshah, Ghazaleh, Nahvi, Iraj, Zarkesh-Esfahani, Sayyed Hamid, Ghanavati, Hossein, Khodaverdi, Hanif, Barani, Morteza
Annals of microbiology 2013 v.63 no.1 pp. 91-100
Bacillus (bacteria), Streptomyces, ammonium compounds, biomass, bioremediation, biosurfactants, coliform bacteria, compost quality, heavy metals, inoculum, nitrates, organic matter, pathogens, screening, seed germination, surface tension, whey
Wild screening of bacterial strains from compost materials was performed. Several biosurfactant-producer strains were isolated and then cultured in whey as a low-cost medium for biosurfactant production. Two strains, identified as Bacillus sp. and Streptomyces sp., were the best biosurfactant producers and were selected for determination of compost quality enhancing. The effect of cell biomass, cell-free supernatant, and a consortium of these two strains on compost quality were determined and specific parameters of compost were analyzed. The results showed that using these bacteria (or supernatants) in compost processing have slight stimulatory effect on bacterial population (8.08 log₁₀ CFU/g), surface tension reduction (to 42.6 mN/m at 24 h), and heavy metal bioremediation (>50 % in most treatments), speeding up the decomposition rate of organic matter (42.3 % OM at the end of experiment), accelerating the stabilization process by reduction of NH ₄ ⁺ to NO ₃ ⁻ ratio (reduced from 0.2 to 0.026), decreasing the biotoxicity (tested by seed germination and root length of germinated seed), and also reduction of pathogens (reduced from 2100 to 120 MPN/g in fecal coliform).