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Polymers of 3-hydroxyacids in plants
Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are polyesters of bacterial origin that have properties of biodegradable plastics and elastomers. Synthesis of PHA in crop plants would allow the large-scale production and use of these biodegradable and renewable polymers as substitutes for petroleum-derived plastics. Synthesis of a diversity of PHAs in plants, such as Arabidopsis thaliana, rapeseed, corn and cotton, has been demonstrated through the genetic engineering of metabolic pathways in the cytoplasm, plastid and peroxisome. PHA can also be used as a novel tool to study various aspects of plant metabolism, such as the regulation of carbon flux to the fatty acid biosynthetic and degradation pathways.
biodegradable, elastomer, fatty acid, metabolic engineering, peroxisome, plastic, plastid, polyhydroxyalkanoate, polyhydroxybutyrate
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