Industrial biotechnology news
A new method of producing grapefruit flavouring, from orange oil, has been developed by researchers at the University of Oxford, thanks to funding from EPSRC and BBSRC. The new process is more environmentally sustainable and produces flavouring that can be labelled 'natural' under EU regulations.
Making grasses more digestible promises improved feed for ruminants and better biomass for biofuel production, with economic and environmental benefits for both. Plant biomass contains considerable calorific value but most of it makes up robust cell walls, an unappetising evolutionary advantage that helped grasses to survive foragers and prosper for more than 60 million years.
Scientists at the universities of Kent and Bristol have built a miniature scaffold inside bacteria that can be used to bolster cellular productivity, with implications for the next generation of biofuel production. Because there is a growing need for the renewable production of biofuels and other commodity chemicals to move away from fossil fuels, scientists have long sought to enhance the internal organisation of bacteria and improve the efficiency of the cells for making nutrients, pharmaceuticals and chemicals.