Protein breakthrough opens up chemical remediation possibilities


In California, researchers at the University of California at Berkeley have developed a protein “mat” that can trap chemical pollution, including insecticides.

The work managed to overcome challenges researchers have had in stabilizing proteins on synthetic components. The key was developing a heteropolymers that mimicked the environment in which a protein keeps its structure and can function properly.

“We think we’ve cracked the code for interfacing natural and synthetic systems,” Ting Xu, professor at University of California, Berkeley, told the Business Standard. “Proteins have very well-defined statistical pattern, so if you can mimic that pattern, then you can marry the synthetic and natural systems, which allows us to make these materials.”

The work was published in a recent issue of Science.