Microbeads are tiny balls of plastic (less than 0.5 mm in size) whose alleged powers of exfoliation have made them a mainstay of cosmetics ranging from facial cleanser to toothpastes. However, they are too small to be removed by sewage filtration systems and so end up in rivers and oceans, where they are ingested by birds, fish and other marine life. Now researchers from the University of Bath have developed biodegradable cellulose microbeads that could potentially replace harmful plastic ones.
Scientists from the University of Bath have developed a process for producing polycarbonates from sugar and carbon dioxide.
Covestro, formerly Bayer Material Science, has made a research breakthrough making the polyurethane precursor aniline from sugar instead of the petrochemical route.
Researchers at Utah State University have successfully decoded and reprogrammed the biosynthetic machinery that produces a variety of natural compounds found in fungi.
Researchers from China and USA report production of natural functional dye for wool fabrics extracted from sorghum husk.
After biofuels and carotenoids, the French biotech start-up Deinove is now moving forward on the cosmetics front. Its engineered microbes can produce a number of high-value chemicals for skin care, and Deinove plans to bring them to market until the end of 2018.
American Process partner with several companies to exploit its nanocellulose production technology [Registered]
The biotech start-up American Process Inc (API) recently signed a Joint Development Agreement with the Netherlands-based companies Will & Co B.V.and P.R.G. B.V. to develop, produce and supply ready-to-use thermoplastic compounds reinforced with nanocellulose. American Process has developed a proprietary, low-cost process to separate nanocellulose from biomass.
Novel process to produce biobased butadiene used extensively in plastics and rubber products [Registered]
Researchers from the University of Delaware, the University of Minnesota and the University of Massachusetts, all affiliated with the Catalysis Center for Energy Innovation (CCEI), have invented a process to make biobased butadiene from plant sugars.
The biotech start-up Bio-on recently announced the construction of its new plant near Bologna that will produce biopolymer designed to replace the microbeads in cosmetics, deemed responsible for marine pollution and already banned in some countries.