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Photosynthesis process tweaked in engineered cyanobacteria to produce biochemicals [Registered]

Researchers at the University of California, Davis, have engineered blue-green algae to grow chemical precursors for fuels and plastics. “Most chemical feedstocks come from petroleum and natural gas, and we need other sources,” said Shota Atsumi, assistant professor of chemistry at UC Davis and lead author on the study published Jan. 7 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The U.S. Department of Energy has set a goal of obtaining a quarter of industrial chemicals from biological processes by 2025. Atsumi’s team is working with cyanobacteria to grow chemicals. The challenge is to get the cyanobacteria to make…

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