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Published: 14 November 2020

By Andy Ross

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This is Grown is the latest project to use bacteria to make a replacement for plastic.

Designer and creative researcher, Jen Keane, has used a bacteria, k. rhaeticus, to produce a cellulose thread as a Masters research project. The thread has then been moulded and shaped into the top of a shoe. 

2020 seems to be the year for this bacteria. Here is a project that makes use of the cellulose-producing qualities of bacteria for medical applications, and if you fancy reading something really academic, here is a paper about using them for energy storage and conversion. At a time when the world is looking for alternative, eco-friendly materials to non-biodegradable plastics, perhaps bacteria are coming the rescue.  

(Photograph by Jen Keane.)