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Towards a Novel Bioremediation System for Microplastic Contaminated Soils

Bilsby, Charlotte (2021) Towards a Novel Bioremediation System for Microplastic Contaminated Soils. Master of Research (MRes) thesis, University of Kent,. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.89665) (KAR id:89665)

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https://doi.org/10.22024/UniKent/01.02.89665

Abstract

The proliferation of plastic, more specifically poly(ethylene) terephthalate (PET) as a durable, long-lasting material has also led to the polymer becoming an unprecedented environmental pollutant. Despite the technology that facilitated the growth of plastic production, the means of disposing the plastic has further negative impacts to the surrounding environment. Various researchers have explored the development potential of different bioremediation systems capable of removing different plastic polymers from the environment by biological degradation. Since the discovery of the PET hydrolysing enzyme, PETase in 2016, the bioremediation of PET is much more plausible. In this study we address a novel approach to remove microplastic pollution from terrestrial ecosystems. The model organism, Dictyostelium discoideum, was selected due to their ecological niche and fully established molecular tool kit. This study aimed to produce a model organism capable of secreting the PETase enzyme into their surrounding environment. The generation of a D. discoideum compatible vector plasmids containing the PETase gene was faced with a multitude of hurdles linked to the repeat content and A/T richness of the D. discoideum genome. Transformation of D. discoideum with the PETase gene was perceived as successful, and provided justification for further work towards the creation of a suitable bioremediation system.

Item Type: Thesis (Master of Research (MRes))
Thesis advisor: von der Haar, Tobias
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.89665
Uncontrolled keywords: Poly(ethylene) terephthalate (PET), Dictyostelium discoideum, plastic degradation, bioremediation, PETase, plastic pollution, Microbiology
Subjects: Q Science
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Natural Sciences > School of Biosciences
SWORD Depositor: System Moodle
Depositing User: System Moodle
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2021 15:10 UTC
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2021 15:17 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/89665 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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