Team scientists have found that the functioning of the digestive system of cancers can open the door for transforming wood into biofuels, according to a study published today by Nature magazine.
The research, led by the University of New York (R. Unido), reveals some secrets to the "grave", a small, without a "vertebrate, also known as the" sea termite ".
These creatures, explain the authors, fulfill an important ecological mission because they "eat" large quantities of wood that end up in the sea from the mouth.
Discomfort for boats and spring structures
At the same time, remember, they can be disturbing as they also damage the pools of boats and the structures of the docks built with this material.
However, until now, it was not known how the bush could brew lignin, a highly resistant organic polymer located in the walls of plant cells and cellulose nanofibers.
Experts have found that the "sea termite" hose contains chemocytins, proteins present in some crustaceans that, in addition to transporting oxygen and their characteristic blue blood, are crucial when extracting sugar from a tree.
Scientists hope this finding will help develop sustainable tools that can transform wood into low-carbon fuels as an alternative to fossil fuels.
"The mushroom is the only small animal known to have a sterile digestive system, which facilitates the study of their wood digestion process compared to other similar creatures such as termites that require thousands of gut microbes to carry out this feature, "said lead author of the study, Simon McQueen-Mason, at the University of York.
In this way, he emphasizes, he transforms "grapevine tree" into "very small pieces", after which he adapts to chemocytes to change the structure of the lignin.
"Enzymes GH7, of the same group with which the fungi break up the tree, can then penetrate into vulgar material and release sugars," adds McQueen-Mason.
Woody plants, the most abundant renewable carbon source on the planet
Experts remember that biomass of woody plants is the most abundant renewable carbon source on the planet and, unlike food crops used to produce biofuels, do not pose risks to food safety.
"In the long run, this discovery could be useful to reduce the amount of energy needed to pretreat the tree to transform it into a biofuel," says Neil Bruce, co-author of the study.
Chemocyanum has the effect of increasing the cellulose equivalent of previous treatments developed with thermochemical energy to facilitate hydrolysis of biomass, the expert concludes. EFEverde