New advances in tailoring extremophiles for bioenergy

August 27, 2012 |

In Georgia, researchers from the University of Georgia and the BioEnergy Science Center (BESC) have developed a DNA transformation technology for organisms in the Caldicellulosiruptor group, that can utilize biomass even at temperatures higher than 160 Fahrenheit. The team is working with a group of bacteria that can use biomass for growth and will use genetics to teach them to make ethanol.

Their discoveries were published in PLOS ONE. Paul Gilna, the director of the BioEnergy Science Center headquartered at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, said, “The work of Dr. Westpheling and her team at UGA to develop these genetic tools is a real breakthrough for BESC that will open the way to allow us to further develop the Caldicellulosiruptor bacteria as a new platform for the efficient conversion of lignocellulosic biomass into fuels.”

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