Application of Biosurfactant as a Substitute of Synthetic Chemical Surfactant in Commercial Laundry Detergents

Almost all surfactants, an important component used in modern day commercial laundry detergents, are chemically synthesized and exert toxicity to fresh water living organisms. Furthermore, these components often produce undesirable effects. Therefore, growing public disquiet about the environmental hazards and risks associated with chemical surfactants has stimulated the search for ecofriendly, natural substitutes of chemical surfactants in laundry detergents.

A recent study from our laboratory has shown that cyclic lipopeptide (CLP) biosurfactants produced by B. subtilis strains were stable over a pH range of 7.0-12.0 and heating them at 80°C for 60 min did not result in any loss of their surface-active property.69 Crude CLP biosurfactants showed good emulsion formation capability with vegetable oils and demonstrated excellent compatibility and stability with commercial laundry detergents favoring their inclusion in laundry detergents formulations.69

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