Degradation Potential of some Hydrocarbon Compounds of Petroleum and Plant Origin by Aspergillus Oryzae (JQ675305.1)

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Adeniyi Sanyaolu
Adedotun Adekunle
Akinniyi Osuntoki


A good way of restoring an environment polluted with hydrocarbon is the application of methods that exploit the metabolic activity of microorganisms. Twenty five isolates of known fungi from three species of the genus Aspergillus isolated from five different soil environments and necrotic seeds of Irvingia gabonensis from four open markets in Lagos, Nigeria were studied for their ability to degrade hydrocarbons of petroleum and plant origin. These fungi were screened (in a preliminary test) for ability to grow under crude oil fume. Thereafter, using the Gas Chromatography technique, the fungal isolate adjudged to have performed best in the preliminary screening was evaluated for its ability to degrade 5 different petroleum hydrocarbon compounds and one vegetable hydrocarbon compound by measuring Total Petroleum Hydrocarbon (TPH) and Free Fatty Acid (FFA) profile respectively. Results from the preliminary screening showed that Aspergillus oryzae (from necrotic seeds of I. gabonensis) thrived best under crude oil fume. Also, results from the degradation studies showed a reduction in the Total Petroleum Hydrocarbon (TPH) in each of the petroleum based oil and a change in the fatty acid levels in the oil from I.gabonensis seed. This confirms the ability of this fungus to degrade petroleum and vegetable hydrocarbon compounds. This work has thus contributed to literature on the identity and sources of some fungi that are capable of causing disease on I. gabonensis seed and the attendant deterioration in its FFA as well as having the potential for remediating a petroleum hydrocarbon contamination. This work is probably a first report at comparing the efficiency of A. oryzae from an oilseed at utilizing petroleum and vegetable hydrocarbon compounds.

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