Washington, June 29 (ANI): Scientists have engineered photosynthetic bacteria to produce simple sugars and lactic acid.
Researchers from the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard and Harvard Medical School believe the innovation could lead to new, greener methods for producing commodity chemicals in bulk.
As of now, sugar is primarily produced from sugar cane, which grows only in tropical and subtropical climates.
The technology would also reduce carbon dioxide emissions associated with transporting sugar globally lead to greater availability of biodegradable plastics, and allow capture of harmful CO2 emissions from power plants and industrial facilities.
Not only that, because the process is followed through photosynthesis, it would be highly economical too. In addition, production costs, transportation cost and the cost of lactic acid would also plummet.
"What we're doing is using genetic engineering to get organisms to act the way we want them to-in this case producing food additives," said Wyss Institute senior staff scientist Jeffrey Way, Ph.D.
"These discoveries have significant practical implications in moving toward a green economy."
Their research findings appear in the current issue of Applied and Environmental Biology. (ANI)