This study intended to compare the efficiency of fungal monocultures and co-cultures in the simultaneous delignification and saccharification of kitchen waste and Eichhornia crassipes in order to subject the hydrolysate into biofuel production. Three fungal isolates of genus Trichoderma, Aspergillus, Pycnoporus and an unidentified strain (F113) were grown in mono and co-cultures and the extracted enzymes were used for the degradation. Co-culture of Trichoderma spp with the other fungi improved its enzyme activity while the other co-cultures did not show significantly improved enzymatic degradation compared to monocultures. The highest percentage of saccharification (over total dry weight) achieved were 11.9% with kitchen waste after seven days and 9.8% with E. crassipes after 4 days. The drop in degradation rate normally seen after complete digestion of amorphous cellulose was not apparent probably due to the grinding of the substrates to fine particle size.
Key words: Fungal co-culture, biofuel, cellulase, kitchen waste, invasive weeds.
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