Biodegradation of Poly(vinyl alcohol) and Bacterial Cellulose Composites by Aspergillus niger
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The ability of fungal strains to attack a composite material obtained from poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) and bacterial cellulose (BC) is investigated. The fungal strain tested was Aspergillus niger. This fungal strain was able to change not only the polymer surface from smoother to rougher, but also to disrupt the polymer. The degradation results were confirmed by visual observations, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analyses, X-ray diffraction analyses and FTIR spectra of the film samples. SEM micrographs confirmed the growth of fungi on the composite film surface. The degree of microbial degradation depends on culture medium and on composition of polymeric materials, especially on PVA content. The biodegradation process is accelerated by the presence of glucose in the culture medium as an easily available carbon source.
KeywordsBiodegradation Bacterial cellulose Poly(vinyl alcohol) SEM analysis Fungi Aspergillus niger
This study was supported by the project PNCDI II 32-115, financed by National Center for Programme Management (CNMP), Romania. Authors recognize also financial support from the European Social Fund through POSDRU/89/1.5/S/54785 project: “Postdoctoral Program for Advanced Research in the field of nanomaterials”.
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