Biological Extraction of Chitosan from Aquatic Biowaste–A Low Cost Technology
Keywords:Chitin, Chitosan, Aquatic biowaste, Biological extraction, Quality parameters.
The shrimp industry generates a huge amount of shell waste which usually cause environmental pollution. This waste can be utilized as an economic source of chitin and chitosan. Chitin is the second most abundant renewable natural source following cellulose and the main source of chitin is crustacean waste. Chitosan which is a derivative of chitin after the process of deacetylation has multiple of commercial and possible medical uses based on its degree of deacetylation. Keeping in view of its significance, the present study is aimed to extract chitosan by using chemical and biological methods from aquatic waste like shells of shrimp, crab and fish scales and to characterize the chitosan quality which includes parameters like ash, moisture, protein and lipid content and degree of deacetylation (DDA). Biological method of chitosan extraction from crustacean shells is an advanced and new eco-friendly technique which involves extraction of long chain carbohydrate polymer chitin by using marine fungi and it produces a good quality end product. Among the three aquatic biowaste materials selected, maximum quantity of chitin (474.66±25.02%) and chitosan (441.00±26.52%) were obtained from shrimp shell waste through biological extraction and consist of relatively low contents of protein (7.9±0.44%), fat (3.2±0.09%), moisture (1.7±0.08%) and ash (1.2±0.02%) on a dry basis compared to chitosan obtained from chemical extraction. Biologically extracted shrimp chitosan appeared to have superior quality than chitosan derived from crab shells and fish scales. Further, utilisation of shrimp shell waste for the production of these kind of valuable biopolymers give more economical and biological advantages along with reduction of environmental pollution.