Author: Michelle Dobrovolny

  • Scientists start to tap marine microbes for biotech use

    [PARIS] The hot, brackish waters of French Polynesia‚Äôs lagoons in the Pacific could harbour microbes with huge commercial potential, including for drug creation or to produce alternatives to plastics, say researchers. The extreme conditions found in some Polynesian aquatic ecosystems, which are often characterised by high temperatures and salinity, mean that unique marine bacteria have…

  • Start-up promises to revolutionise shrimp farming

    A UK start-up says it has developed a low-cost, ecological alternative to traditional shrimp farming by using bacteria as both a water filter and food for its shrimp. IKEA-like portable units using microbes and solar power to cheaply grow shrimp indoors could transform the booming aquaculture sector and prevent further environmental degradation, according to its…

  • Rice gene digs deep to triple yields in drought

    A gene that gives rice plants deeper roots can triple yields during droughts, according to Japanese researchers writing in Nature Genetics this week (4 August). Rice is a staple food for nearly half of the world’s population, but is also particularly susceptible to drought owing to its shallow roots, researchers say. The new study shows…