Lab robots at work
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, left, visited Boston-area start-up Agrivida last week to tour the biotech company's lab. Agrivida has received grant money from the Departments of Agriculture and Energy to research a method of speeding up biofuel production from non-food plants. Its technique is to isolate and insert specific genes into plants that break down the cellulose in the cell walls of sorghum and corn stover, the residue from corn harvesting. To sift through the hundreds of thousands of enzymes scientists are trying to isolate, it uses this robot to rapidly scan different enzymes. Showing him how it operates is Agrivida biochemist Taran Shilling.
See related story: "Agrivida teaches biofuel crops to self destruct."
May 19, 2011 7:01 AM PDT
Photo by: Martin LaMonica/CNET
| Caption by: Martin LaMonica
Conversation powered by Livefyre