MSY researchers build “Swiss Army knife” for cyanobacteria

In Michigan, researchers at Michigan State University have built a molecular Swiss Army knife that streamlines the molecular machinery of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, making biofuels and other green chemical production from these organisms more viable.

The team has done in a year what has taken millions of years to evolve. In the current issue of Plant Cell, they describe how they fabricated a synthetic protein that not only improves the assembly of the carbon-fixing factory of cyanobacteria, but also provides a proof of concept for a device that could potentially improve plant photosynthesis or be used to install new metabolic pathways in bacteria.

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