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Scientists turn seaweed into fuel with E. coli

The next time you get an order of miso soup, take a look at the seaweed lurking in your bowl. That same type of seaweed could some day power your car.

Scientists from Bio Architecture Lab, Inc (BAL) and the University of Washington in Seattle have found a way to turn seaweed into fuel with the use of genetically modified Escherichia coli, most commonly known as E. coli, the Scientific American reported. E. coli is a bacteria that can show up in food and make humans ill.

The team of scientists genetically modified a strain of E. coli to digest the sugars found in kombu — an edible kelp often found in miso soup — and turn it into ethanol. Once modified, the team tested the new E. coli by adding it to a solution of water and ground up kombu and letting it sit for a few days.

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