Industrial chemical production goes green: researchers harness nature's chemical producers

Monday, 23 January, 2017
Image of samples in a lab
Conventional industrial chemical production requires harsh conditions and environmentally unfriendly processes to transform raw materials like crude oil into useful chemicals and plastics. But imagine if nature's own chemical cell factories could turn cheap starting materials such as organic waste leftover from farming or food processing into recyclable components for the chemical industry.

In living organisms, biochemical reactions are taking place all the time – turning nutrients into useful products – facilitated by specialized proteins known as enzymes. These biological catalysts or biocatalysts can be harnessed to accelerate other types of reactions for industrial chemistry – but under much milder conditions.

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Sustainable industrial processes based on a C-C bond-forming enzyme platform
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