Caterpillars digests plastic

Scientist discover wax worms who can digest the common plastic compound polyethylene, and produce the byproduct ethylene glycol. Interestingly, compared to bacteria the wax worm is faster at digesting plastic. Since wax also contains a chemical bond found in polyethylene some speculate the worms might have evolved a molecular mechanism to break the chemical bonds. There are still major hurtles in understanding the wax worm’s digestive system, but just think of the future possibilities surrounding bio-degradation.

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-By Julia Watson :