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Areas of Biotechnology Research

Environmental Biotechnology

Environmental groups sometimes portray biotechnology as a threat to the environment. But biotechnology can also benefit the environment. Bacteria and fungi are being used to clean up toxic waste, and bacteria may also be a useful source of energy in the future.

Some bacteria can get energy and nutrition from chemicals that are dangerous to humans. They take in these dangerous chemicals—removing them from the soil, water, or atmosphere—and release harmless ones as waste. Many researchers are using these bacteria to clean up polluted water and land. Sometimes, the bacteria are genetically engineered so that they can do the cleanup faster or more efficiently.

Bacteria may also be able to help solve the world's energy needs. Some bacteria naturally carry out reactions that produce energy. These bacteria could be used to provide electricity. Some bacteria even produce electricity while also breaking down dangerous chemicals. In the future, bacteria could clean some pollutants out of water and provide electricity for other cleanup jobs at the same time.

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Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesCool Science CareersAreas of Biotechnology Research - Basic Techniques Of Biotechnology, Industrial Biotechnology, Health Care, Genetically Engineered Plants, Genetically Engineered Animals