SCREENING AND PARTIAL PURIFICATION OF PROTEASE PRODUCED BY BACTERIA ISOLATED FROM TERMITE SOILGAYATHRI, R., SHOBANA, A. SUJATHA, A. AND ANITHA SUBASH
Soil is the richest source of microorganisms. Soil microorganisms act as a source for natural products like antibiotics, enzymes and other bioactive compounds. Microbial enzymes are applicable in many industrial processes and new applications are being identified continuously. These enzymes are alternative to chemicals, since they improve the properties and characteristics of the products. In the present study, bacteria were isolated from the termite soil and its morphology and characteristics were identified by staining and biochemical tests. The results showed that the isolated bacteria was Gram positive, rod shaped belonging to Bacillus species. They were also screened for the synthesis of cellulase, amylase, lipase and protease by qualitative and quantitative methods. Qualitative screening result showed that the isolated bacteria have the ability to produce all the four enzymes and quantitative screening proved that the isolated bacteria have the ability to synthesize more of protease than other enzymes. Therefore, protease enzyme was selected for purification by ammonium sulphate precipitation. Among various fractions, 60-80% fraction showed better precipitation, which was further purified by dialysis. The specific activity and purification fold were increased after dialysis, indicating the purity of the isolated enzyme.