Physico-Chemical and Microbiological Assessment of Soils from Dumpsites for Plastic Degrading Microorganisms

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Biological Sciences, Anchor University Lagos, Nigeria. P.O. Box 10001, Ayobo, Lagos, Nigeria.

2 Department of Biological Sciences, Anchor University Lagos, Nigeria. P.O. Box 10001, Ayobo, Lagos, Nigeria


Plastic pollution is a threat to the environment because of its slow degradation rate and high usage. The aim of this study is to isolate plastic degrading microorganisms from soils. The soil samples used for this study were collected from dumpsites filled with plastic and plastic materials and the effectiveness of the degradation of plastic materials was studied over a period of six (6) weeks in broth and agar culture under laboratory conditions by weight determination method. Physicochemical and microbiological analysis was carried out on the various soil samples using standard protocols. The biodegradation of polyvinylchloride (PVC) was done in-vitro using the microorganisms isolated from the soil. Microorganisms that were able to degrade a higher percentage of the plastic materials were; Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus sp, Bacillus sp, Escherichia coli Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus and Trichoderma viridae. The total viable count for bacteria and fungi were within the range of 11.8x105 CFU/g to 2.0x1010 CFU/g and 3.3x105 CFU/g to 0.1x1011 CFU/g respectively. Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus sp, Bacillus sp, Micrococcus sp, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus, and Trichoderma viridae, degraded plastic up to 25%, 31.2%, 25% 31.2%, 12%, 10% and 10% respectively. These isolates may be used to actively degrade plastics, thereby reducing the rate of plastic pollution in our ecosystem.


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