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Biodegradable plastic trash can munching bacteria

#Cosmoread: A durable plastic called PET is considered a major threat to the environment because it is highly resistant to breakdown. A newly discovered microbe, it is astonishingly good food but this hardy plastic researchers found a potential new match.

An estimated 342 million tons (311 metric tons) of plastic are produced annually worldwide, and currently only about 14 percent is collected for recycling, according to the World Economic Forum.

Most plastic extraordinary slowly degrades, but PET – Poly Short (ethylene terephthalate) – particularly durable, and about 61 million tons (56 metric tons) of colorless plastic was produced worldwide in 2013 alone, the researchers According to.

Previously, only PET rare fungal species were found to break down. Scientists in Japan this hardy bacteria that can biodegrade plastic is discovered.

“Bacteria completely degrade to carbon dioxide and water in PET before a possible stress,” study co-author Kohei Oda, Japan, Kyoto Institute of Technology scientists said an application.

The researchers from the site, soil and wastewater recycling a plastic PET bottle debris collected 250 samples. PET bacteria that they could eat these samples scanned.

Scientists have a new species of bacteria, which they Ideonella sakaiensis 201-F6, that almost completely 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 ° C) for six weeks after breaking down a thin film of PET identified nominated. Plastic appendages that compounds secreted by the cells may be of help to dissolve, the researchers said.

Genetic and biochemical analysis identified two key enzymes involved in the breakdown of PET. An enzyme water is an intermediate substance, which was broken into basic building blocks of other enzymes in PET plastic has worked to break down, scientists said.

These findings, the real world has a wide range of applications, including tools for bacteria to break down the PET should be easier than the fungus. “We hope that we have the technology to handle such waste PET can grow,” said Oda.

In the future, researchers want to “improve the ability of microorganisms to degrade,” said Oda.

It is not known how these enzymes have evolved, Oda said, those most closely related to enzymes and enzymes for both bears little resemblance.