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Production, Characterization and Toxicological Evaluation of Eco-Friendly Flavolipid Biosurfactant

K N Lokesh, Channarayappa ., R V Karadi, Bindu Sadanandan


At present majority of surfactants are chemically synthesized. Nevertheless, in recent years, much attention has been directed towards biosurfactants due to their broad range of functional properties, there are cheaper as they can be produced from alternative sources. They have applications in the fields, such as:  oil recovery process, as an additive in food processing industry, pharmaceuticals preparations, energy saving technologies etc. As they are being microbial derivatives, it is relatively biocompatible and lesser toxic than chemically synthesized counterparts. In the present investigation the microbial synthesis of Biosurfactants using Flavobacterium sp. MTCC249 was performed. The optimized medium, i.e., modified mineral salt medium was used for production of microbial surfactants by replacing standard carbon sources with alternative carbon sources like sugar molasses, zatropa seed oil, pongamia seed oil, castor oil, waste frying oil and used motor oil. Non-conventional nitrogen sources like effluents obtained from milk diary, paper industry and leather processing industry were used for the production. The lab scale production was carried out in lab scale fermentor (Sartorious B-Lite model) under the controlled conditions of pH, temp and agitation. The recovery of microbial surfactant was performed by organic solvent method (Chloroform: methanol). The physicochemical properties of Biosurfactant were assessed by using various methods viz. HLB value (hydrophilic-liphophilic-balance), surface tension, CMC (Critical Micelle Concentration). The produced Biosurfactants was subjected for toxicological evaluation. The flavolipid Biosurfactant has shown potent antibiotic activity especially against Gram negative bacteria’s. In order to assess its compatibility with respect to biological subjects, Pharmaco-toxicological studies are carried out. The oral and dermal toxicity studies were conducted as per OECD guidelines using Whister albino rats. Flavolipid Biosurfactants does not exhibit any dermal or oral toxicity on pre-clinical model that established its safety criteria for biological evaluation. 


Keywords: Flavolipid biosurfactants, modified mineral salt media, flavobacterium MTCC 2495


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