Acinetobacter baumannii was isolated from municipal landfill area, Pallikaranai, Chennai, Tamilnadu. The degradation ability of the bacteria was determined by performing Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). The by-products of polyethylene degradation were monitored by gas chromatography-mass spectrometer (GC-MS) analysis. The toxicity of degradation by-products of low density polyethylene (LDPE) was tested on the plant Vigna radiata by determining the morphological parameters such as root length, shoot length and chlorophyll content. After 30 days of degradation process, the FTIR results revealed an increase in carbonyl index and formation of peaks and occurrence of stretches. Alkane compounds were analyzed in GC-MS analysis. Determination of toxicity level of intermediate degraded products showed no changes in morphological characters.
Key words: Biodegradation, Low density polyethylene (LDPE), Acinetobacter baumannii, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), gas chromatography-mass spectrometer (GC-MS), Vigna radiata.