Journal of Advanced Microbiology

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Abstract: In the present study, a well characterized and identified halotolerant bacterial strain (Bacillus

megaterium MTCC-9205) was evaluated for its protease production. The bacterial strain when grown in skim

milk agar plates showed the conspicuous zone of clearance around the colony indicating the protease production

ability. Evaluation of extra cellular protease production by the bacterium was conformed in skim milk broth

medium. Both acidic and alkaline protease production by the bacterium was screened in the skim milk broth

medium using different substrates such as whey, soybean powder, black gram, green gram, wheat bran as cheap

carbon sources. The highest yield of alkaline protease of 38.47 ± 1.32 U/ml by the strain was observed during

the fermentation with soybean powder along with higher biomass (0.487±0.24 g/50 ml) production. Similarly

acid protease was found to be 46.75 ± 1.22 U/ml with soybean as carbon source. The fermentation kinetics as

well as yield factor of alkaline protease production was calculated and found maximum (12.95 U/g) in presence

of soybean powder as carbon source. Further, the strain is immobilized and the activity of the enzyme was

studied up to fourth cycle. The activity of the enzyme increased slightly with the use of recycled beads up to

third cycle and fell thereafter. Hence, the present study revealed that the halotolerant B.megaterium is a

potential protease producing bacteria which can be exploited for various industrial applications.