Encapsulated Bacteria for Bio-remediation
Bac-in-a-Box® can keep cells safe from the environment – and keep the environment safe from cells!
As humankind’s demands on the natural environment continue to increase, so will the necessity for environmental protection and monitoring. Many types of bacteria and algae are being developed for such applications; for example, anaerobic bacteria that can digest crude oil to mop up oil spills, algae that can be grown in salt- or waste- water to clean up these waters and simultaneously produce oils that can be refined into biofuels like ethanol.
Bac-in-a-Box® technology allows both algae and bacteria to be cultured under controlled, protected and contained conditions either out in the real environment or in bioreactors. Bac-in-a-Box® (around 1mm in size) products contain tens of thousands of algal cells or millions of bacteria in each capsule.
The capsules are permeable to allow small molecules in and out so that the cells can live and grow happily but other foreign cells, bacteria and viruses will not pass the membrane in either direction.
The capsules are also large enough that they can be easily ‘managed’ and contained in a particular area.
The capsules are biologically inert and environmentally safe (the base material is cotton). Using our propriety Gel8 materials capsules are heat, pressure, pH and temperature resistant and so do not dissolve or disintegrate even under the most environmentally challenging conditions. However, they can be dissolved to release the cells (alive), if required by our propriety Gel8 reversal solution.
Bac-in-a-Box® products are therefore a means to:
- protect the bacteria and algae from the environment
- contain them in a predetermined area via nets
- allow easy removal
- grow to amounts for harvesting
- perform their cleaning function