Plastics continue to exist as both a blessing and a very bad weapon for the world. However, the amount of plastic produced and wasted recently has brought some serious environmental damage. On top of that, the researchers seem to have found the ideal solution to this problem. Solution for plastic waste came from bacteria!
Bacteria that can eat plastic waste in days are developed
They created a plastic-eating enzyme cocktail that could potentially spoil plastic in a matter of days, an event that typically takes hundreds of years to break down. The enzyme mixture contains PETase and MHETase. It was developed by a type of bacteria that feeds on plastic PET (usually found in plastic bottles) called Ideonella Sakaiensis. It was the same scientists who accidentally created the first enzyme on plastic in 2018. However, it was still slower in the initial enzyme process.
The team of researchers experimented on various ways in which they could speed up the process, and one such approach was to combine an enzyme blend to create some sort of cocktail. In addition to PET, the enzyme can also help break down PEF or polyethene furoate found in beer bottles.
Unfortunately, these are only two types of plastic that can corrode. However, researchers are trying to create different options with other enzymes to bridge this gap.