Read the full story from the American Chemical Society.
Strings of sugars called polysaccharides are the most abundant biopolymers on Earth. Because of their versatile and environmentally friendly properties, these molecules could eventually replace some plastics. Now, researchers have identified a previously unknown bacterial enzyme that can make a new type of polysaccharide, which is similar to the biopolymer chitin. The new molecule is biodegradable and could be useful for drug delivery, tissue engineering and other biomedical applications.