Background: Exploitation of plant biomass as a renewable resource has paved a momentum for research on microbial degradation of lignocellulose. The ubiquity and diversity in actinomycetes species as well as strain improvement by genetic manipulation, and large-scale cultivation easily form an important part of the microbial community responsible for lignocellulose degradation in the environment. In addition, their growth as branching hyphae is well adapted to the penetration and degradation of insoluble substrates such as lignocellulose.
Methods: A total of 28 Actinomycete isolates from 8 soil samples were collected from 3 different litchi gardens (Bhagwanpur, Susta and Ahiapur) of Muzaffarpur District area of North Bihar. Screening of isolates was based on morphological characteristics followed by physiological and biochemical analysis (like cellulase, xylanase and amylase activity).
Results: The present study was confined to 5 bioactive isolates which exhibited a range of colony colours (dark brown, brownish, whitish, yellowish white and dark grey). These isolates were later purified and subjected to a few enzymatic screening. Results indicate that 245 isolates showed the ability to secrete cellulase, lipase and protease respectively. 5 of the most promising isolates were selected and identified using their 16S rRNA sequence. All 5 isolates were identified as Streptomyces spp.