In a new development, a research team at the School of Biosciences, University of Kent has designed and constructed equipment that can be used to examine biofuel production at a fraction of cost of commercial systems. The technology was then used to showcase that bacterial genetic engineering could be employed to enhance biofuel production.
In fact, commercial equipment employed in the study of biofuel-producing bacteria can be exorbitantly expensive. This prompted the team to develop their own bioreactors that are accessible to most research laboratories. This equipment was used by researchers to verify that one of the genetically engineered type of Clostridium bacteria can produce the biofuel more rapidly.
The findings of the research are published in Access Microbiology and Microbial Biotechnology. The findings reveal that a slight change in a single gene can result in remarkable changes in the way sugars get converted into biofuel products.
Following the development, researchers expect improved accessibility for cheaper bioreactors to stimulate further research into biofuel production using natural origin laboratory created bacteria. These exciting developments will help to assist further research in bacterial biofuel production. It is particularly exciting to use self-expertise to optimize processes that can change waste from food and agriculture into biofuels that are cleaner alternatives to fossil fuels, stated the corresponding author of the study.