Related topics: enzyme · biofuel · ethanol

Bottles made of lignocellulose, perfumes made from apples

Many companies are working on materials that would be as light and resistant as plastic but at the same time fully biodegradable. What if they could be made from... rubbish? A modern, ecological (waste-free—the conversion ...

Eye imaging technology provides opportunities in biotechnology

In her doctoral dissertation, M.Sc. Sanna Haavisto, researched the flow properties of aqueous microcellulose suspensions. Optical coherence tomography, an imaging technology commonly used in medical imaging of eye, was applied ...

Supercomputing improves biomass fuel conversion

Fuels made from agricultural or forestry wastes known as lignocellulosic biomass have long been a champion in the quest to reduce use of fossil fuels. But plant cell walls have some innate defenses that make the process to ...

Upcycling process brings new life to old jeans

A growing population, rising standards of living and quickly changing fashions send mountains of clothing waste to the world's landfills each year. Although processes for textile recycling exist, they tend to be inefficient ...

Researchers grow cells in 'paper organs'

Long before scientists test new medicines in animals or people, they study the effects of the substances on cells growing in Petri dishes. However, a 2-D layer of cells is a poor substitute for the much more complex 3-D structure ...

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Cellulose

Cellulose is an organic compound with the formula (C6H10O5)n, a polysaccharide consisting of a linear chain of several hundred to over ten thousand β(1→4) linked D-glucose units.

Cellulose is the structural component of the primary cell wall of green plants, many forms of algae and the oomycetes. Some species of bacteria secrete it to form biofilms. Cellulose is the most common organic compound on Earth. About 33 percent of all plant matter is cellulose (the cellulose content of cotton is 90 percent and that of wood is 50 percent).

For industrial use, cellulose is mainly obtained from wood pulp and cotton. It is mainly used to produce cardboard and paper; to a smaller extent it is converted into a wide variety of derivative products such as cellophane and rayon. Converting cellulose from energy crops into biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol is under investigation as an alternative fuel source.

Some animals, particularly ruminants and termites, can digest cellulose with the help of symbiotic micro-organisms that live in their guts. Cellulose is not digestible by humans and is often referred to as 'dietary fiber' or 'roughage', acting as a hydrophilic bulking agent for feces.

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