Why genetically engineering microbes to make biofuel failed

Biotech company LS9 launched in 2005 with great ambitions: founded by premier scientists and top-flight venture capitalists, it planned to genetically engineer microorganisms to make hydrocarbon fuels such as diesel cost-effectively from sugar.

But after nine years and $81 million in investment, the owners of LS9 sold the San Francisco-based company last month to biodiesel maker Renewable Energy Group for $40 million in cash and stock, with an additional $21.5 million promised if technology and production milestones are met.

LS9 had hoped to be selling diesel to refineries at least two years ago. Instead, Renewable Energy Group, based in Ames, Iowa, intends to use the LS9 process to make smaller-volume specialty chemicals sometime in the next two years, and it has no immediate plans to make biofuel with the LS9 technology.

Read the full, original story: Why the Promise of Cheap Fuel from Super Bugs Fell Short

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Genetics Unzipped
Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Sometime in 2019, probably in China, SARS CoV-2 figured out a way to interact with a specific "spike" on the ...

Philip Njemanze: Leading African anti-GMO activist claims Gates Foundation destroying Nigeria

Nigerian anti-GMO activist, physician, and inventor pushes anti-gay and anti-GMO ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend