• 최종편집 2024-06-18(화)
 

 

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[LeadersTimes]TheRuralDevelopmentAdministrationhasidentifiedmicroorganismsthatweaken the physical and chemical durability of polyethylene surfaces used in agriculturalproducts, such as vinyl mulching and greenhouse covers, by modifying and decomposingthem.

  

Polyethylene (PE) is the most commonly used plastic in agriculture due to its excellentdurability and chemical resistance. It is primarily used for mulching and greenhouse cladding.However, discarded waste vinyl remains in the environment and adversely affects agricultureas it does not decompose naturally. Significant research efforts have focused on developingenvironmentally friendly decomposition methods.

  

The newly discovered microorganisms, KACC 83073BP and Trametes trogii KACC83074BP, were isolated from domestic agricultural lands and forests. These fungi attach tothe surface of polyethylene films, initiating the oxidative degradation process, the first step inbiodegradation, significantly reducing the mechanical properties of the plastic.

  

Among these, Trametes trogii KACC 83074BP exhibited the highest oxidation effect onmulchingfilm.After10daysoftreatmentwiththisstrain,theoxidationeffectroseby44.7%compared to the single treatment with KACC 83073BP from the Pleurotus genus. Transcriptanalysis of Trametes trogii KACC 83074BP revealed a gene whose __EXPRESSION__ increasedearly and late in the deterioration process of the polyethylene film. Pleurotus spp. KACC83073BP, when incubated with Preussia spp. HRK33 KACC 81283BP, reduced the initialoxidation time of polyethylene by more than 50% compared to single treatments.

  

In general, studies have reported that microbial oxidation of plastic takes at least a month.However,themicroorganismsdiscoveredbytheRuralDevelopmentAdministration

   

demonstrated a significantly accelerated decomposition process, with oxidation of thepolyethylene surface beginning within approximately 7 days of culturing.

  

Theadministrationhasappliedforfourpatentsrelatedtothesemicroorganismsthatpromotepolyethylene decomposition. These findings will serve as fundamental data for the"Proteomics-based Polyethylene Decomposition Enzyme and Decomposition MechanismInvestigation Project" (Korea Program for International Cooperation in AgriculturalTechnology).

  

"The amount of plastic that is thrown away every year and enters the environment issignificant, so eco-friendly treatment alternatives is necessary,” said Sangbum Kim at theAgricultural Microbiology Division of the Rural Development Administration. "This study ishighly meaningful as it secureda research foundation for the eco-friendly treatment of wasteplastics…. We aim to uncover the action mechanism of polyethylene-degrading enzymesusing omics tools such as transcriptomics and proteomics."

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