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Plastics Made By Microbes

The Christian Science Monitor is reporting that three scientists who presented at the 109th general meeting of the American Society for Microbiology speak out on the possibility of plastics made (or broken down) by naturally occurring microbes.

The article highlights the work of Mark van Loosdrecht of Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands who uses bacteria to transform organic waste into plastics. Kevin O’Connor at University College in Dublin, Ireland, who has tackled the same problem. Only he’s not feeding organic waste to his microbes; he feeds them regular plastics. And, Richard Gross of the Polytechnic University in Brooklyn, New York, who feeds vegetable oil to bacteria to produce a substance akin to polyethylene.


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