By 2050th year human population, by some estimates, will reach 9 billions. Even if to leave behind reasoning brackets on a subject "That becomes with environment? ", from one question to wave away it won't turn out in any way. How to feed this crowd?
Cellulose fibers of a paper towel under an electronic microscope (Dennis Kunkel Microscopy photo).
Researchers from Virginsky polytechnical institute (USA), apparently, found a way of the solution of this problem. The group of scientists under the leadership of Percival Cheung managed to turn cellulose into starch, is more exact — in one of its polysaccharides under the name amylase.
The author of work created an artificial biochemical chain which in detail describe in the PNAS magazine. Among the used enzymes are called endoglukonaza, cellobiogidroliza, various fosforilaza etc. All of them were received from bacteria, mushrooms and plants, it was necessary to arrange only them in the correct order and to adjust reaction conditions. As both cellulose, and starch represent glucose polymers, sense of all procedure in changing an arrangement of communications between monomers.
About a third of raw materials turned into the starch-amilozu, remained was hydrolyzed to glucose which could be used for receiving ethanol by means of yeast. In fact, the created fermentativny chain allows to dispose of agricultural vegetable resources more economically (or it is perhaps more eco-friendly). For example, green parts of cereal cultures which go on a forage to cattle, it is possible to use both in the food industry, and for receiving biofuel. Besides, it is possible to transform to starch and that cellulose from which paper is put that adds to a method of ecological "points".
The method of transformation of cellulose in starch still demands completion that it could be used in the industry, however its advantages already are now clear: he doesn't demand neither any additional chemical reagents, nor especially difficult equipment, is besides safe for environment in view of lack of toxic waste.