A hydrogel tablet that rapidly purifies contaminated water could save lives. One tablet can disinfect a litre of water and make it suitable for drinking in under an hour, say its developers at the University of Texas (UT) at Austin, US.
A new type of super-stable organic glass has been created by researchers in Sweden. The group at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg generated a material with the lowest recorded fragility for organic glasses, by mixing eight derivatives of perylene, a polycyclic aromatic molecule (Sci. Adv., 2021, 7, eabi4659).
Vancomycin is an antibiotic of last resort for tackling resistant bacteria like MRSA. Now, researchers have improved its effectiveness by boosting the associated immune response, they report.
A network of UK advanced manufacturing organisations has published a joint report setting out policy recommendations to maximise the potential of UK manufacturing to generate and sustain high value jobs and growth.
Gene therapy development for rare diseases is complex, time consuming and expensive. While there are approximately 7000 rare diseases, only two heritable diseases currently have US FDA-approved gene therapies.
The microbial compound cyanophycin is of commercial interest as a biodegradable biopolymer with high levels of nitrogen. It is used as a store for nitrogen when bacteria fix more of the element from air than they can use. Bacteria can later use this store to manufacture biomolecules.
A study from the University of Georgia, US, suggests a non-edible oilseed crop could generate jet fuels and reduce carbon emissions by 68% per litre (GCB Bioenergy, doi: 10.1111/gcbb.12888).
Scientists in the US have used three layers of phosphorus (P) atoms to create an ultrathin material that can polarise light in a precise and tunable way (Science, doi: 10.1126/science.abj7053). It could lead to advances in telecommunications by allowing fibre optic cables to carry more data than they do now, the researchers say.
Morocco has extended the phytosanitary registration for Pirecris, a bioinsecticide produced by Spanish firm Seipasa, to include its application in the control of thrips and aphids on berries, mint, aromatic plants, rapeseed and spinach. Morocco, which imports up to 95% of its pesticide requirements, had previously approved the use of Pirecris only for the aphids and whitefly in selected horticultural crops.
A committee of EU members has backed the European Commission’s proposal to ban the use of the common food additive titanium dioxide, paving the way for a potential ban in 2022. The European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) deemed it to be unsafe in May 2021.