Thermophilic Bacillus spp. isolated from thermophilic aerobic digestion (TAD) of model agricultural slurry were screened for ability to secret linamarase activity and degrade linamarin, a cyanogenic glycoside toxin abundant in cassava. Screening was performed by both linamarin - picrate assay and by p-nitrophenyl β-d-glucoside (PNPG) degradation, and results of both assays were related. Linamarase positive isolates were identified as Bacillus coagulans, Bacillus licheniformis and Bacillus stearothermophilus. Enzyme production was growth related and peak production was reached in 48 h in B. coagulans and 36 h in B. stearothermophilus. B. coagulans produced over 40 times greater activity than B. stearothermophilus. Enzyme productivity in shake flask was not strictly related to screening assay result. Crude enzyme of B. coagulans was optimally active at 75 °C while that of B. stearothermophilus was optimally active at 80 °C and both had optimum activity at pH 8.0. The thermophilic and neutrophilic- to marginally alkaline activity of the crude enzymes could be very useful in the detoxification and reprocessing of cyanogens containing cassava wastes by TAD for use in animal nutrition.
- agricultural waste
- aerobic digestion