Researchers find molds capable of decomposing bioplastic components

By Lim Chang-won Posted : October 6, 2020, 14:31 Updated : October 6, 2020, 14:31

[Gettyimages Bank]

SEOUL -- Bioplastics can be made from agricultural by-products and also from used plastic bottles and other containers using microorganisms. Not all bioplastics are biodegradable nor biodegrade more readily than commodity fossil-fuel derived plastics. South Korean researchers found some strains of molds promoted the decomposition of bioplastics.

The discovery of molds capable of decomposing bioplastic components was the result of a joint study by research teams from the state-run National Institute of Biological Resources (NIBR) and Kyungbook National University.

The institute has applied for a patent to identify the genes of bioplastic decomposition enzymes and use them in biodegradation. "We will find a variety of microorganisms so that their decomposition capacity can be used to purify pollution," said NIBR President Bae Yeon-jae.

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