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Dr Liang talks about how seashells have helped biotech-HD


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Dr Kang Liang: In CSIRO we are collaborating with the University of Adelaide and the Australian Synchrotron, and together we have been addressing one of the major challenges in biotechnology, the perfection of biomolecules.

The biomolecules are very important in our everyday life ranging from chemical processing to the delivery of vaccines, but the issue is that such molecules are very fragile, they only function within very specific conditions.

We are inspired by nature and, for example, a sea urchin.

So a sea urchin, it's a kind of soft tissue, they form a very hard shell to protect themselves.

So we were basically inspired by this to make the coatings for biomolecules.

So we basically used a new type of material to coat the proteins.

This material is called Metal Organic Frameworks or MOFs.

Dr Paolo Falcaro: The properties of protection that we have are superior to any other technology available at the moment.

We can double the temperature that normally deactivates an enzyme.

I think the benefit for the global health care would be huge.

We could protect with vaccines and we can deliver vaccines, we can store important biomolecules in a way that can be done for the first time without requiring refrigeration, without caring about contaminations or the presence of bacteria's.

We hope to work with Australian manufacturing to produce new or improved products with our technology.

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