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Title: Production of chitosan and lipids from a newly isolated Mucor circinelloides
Authors: Zininga, Johnson Tungamirai 
Issue Date: 2018
Filamentous fungi are well-known sources of a wide variety of industrially-useful biomolecules. This study demonstrates the applicability of a newly isolated oleaginous fungi Mucor circinelloides ZSKP for lipid and chitosan production. Parameters affecting co-production were identified and were statistically optimized, which resulted in a 3–fold improvement in lipid production. The lipid profile showed a high content of unsaturated fatty acids including oleic, linolenic and linoleic acids, while palmitic acid was the major saturated fatty acid (21%). A comparative study to evaluate the efficacy of enzymatic and chemical treatments for biodiesel production from fungal lipids and sunflower oil revealed slightly enhanced production of biodiesel from fungal lipids, using a commercial lipase. The biodiesel synthesized using lipids from M. circinelloides ZSKP satisfied standard specifications and had a higher cetane number (56), lower kinematic viscosity (4.6 mm2/s) and lower acid number (0.03) compared to sunflower oil. Upon optimizing chitosan production and extraction processes the chitosan production was improved 2-fold. The fungal chitosan showed antimicrobial properties and was more effective against Aspergillus niger A chitosan spray was developed which was able to increase the shelf life of fresh fruit produce. These results indicate that Mucor circinelloides ZSKP is a promising candidate for concurrent production of lipids and the versatile bio-polymer chitosan.
Submitted in complete fulfillment for the Degree of Master of Applied Science in Biotechnology, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2018.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Applied Sciences)

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