Read the full story from the University of California-Davis.
Fresh banana, a waft of flowers, blueberry: the scents in Shota Atsumi’s laboratory in the Univ. of California, Davis (UC Davis) Dept. of Chemistry are a little sweeter than most. That’s because Atsumi and his team are engineering bacteria to make esters—molecules widely used as scents and flavorings, and also as basic feedstock for chemical processes from paints to fuels.