Microbial chemistry makes bread rise and cheese mature, and turns grapes into wine. Microbes help make engine fuel, life-saving antibiotics and nano-particle sunscreens. Without fungi and bacteria, the world would sink under its own waste within days, since only these microbes have the ability to degrade complex polymers such as the lignin in plants.
Might we be able to harness this amazing power of microbial degradation to help remove the human-made plastic mountain, or clean up toxic waste sites?
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A lecture by Robin May
The transcript and downloadable versions of the lecture are available from the Gresham College website: https://www.gresham.ac.uk/watch-now/master-chemists
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