Bacteria Transforms Greenhouse Gases Into Usable Chemical Compounds

Researchers at the University of South Florida have discovered a way to use bacteria to transform greenhouse gases into usable chemical compounds. The team took a modified human enzyme 2-hydroxyacyl-coenzyme A lyase (in humans this enzyme degrades branched-chain fatty acids) and inserted it into E. coli microorganisms. When the microorganisms are introduced to greenhouse gases such as formaldehyde, carbon dioxide, and methane, a metabolic bioconversion process takes place, transforming the molecules into more complex compounds.

This new method is enticing for oil manufacturers as it allows them to better manage their impact on the environment and produce valuable chemical compounds like ethylene glycol and glycolic acid – molecules that are used in the production of plastics, cosmetics, cleaning solutions and much more.

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