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Old 10-10-2006
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" Photosynthetic Algae Altered To Grow Without Sunlight

For the first time, scientists have introduced a fundamental metabolic change in a single-celled alga so that it no longer requires light to grow.
Photosynthetic algae are the major primary producers in aquatic environments. They are also used in industry for food, to make pigments and cosmetics, and for other applications.

Until now, these organisms have mostly been grown in open ponds where the variability of the environment, light limitation and contamination with microbes are frequent problems.

Scientists have now found that by inserting just one gene that catalyzes glucose transport into the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum, the organism can thrive in the dark, getting its energy exclusively from the glucose.

This marks a critical first step toward large-scale, high-density, cost effective cultivation of algae using fermentation technology. The results of this study are published in today's issue of Science."
[from http://unisci.com/stories/20012/0615013.htm ]

What about the stuff that grows on the water interface in diesel tanks? Isn't that biomass algae also? Growing without air or light?
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