Natural fibres: New yeast strains could turn plant waste into fabrics

Nylon — used in everything from clothing to car parts to toothbrush bristles — is derived from oil, a nonrenewable fossil fuel. A team of researchers from U of T Engineering is working on a way to make the same chemical from a renewable source: plants.

“Nylon is a copolymer made from two monomers: one is hexamethylene diamine, and the other is adipic acid,” says Professor Krishna Mahadevan (ChemE) the principal investigator on the project. “Our goal is to use yeast to make these chemicals from sugars, instead of from oil.” Read the full U of T Engineering News story.