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UK university students clone bacteria that degrades toluene

4:23 AM MST | November 21, 2013 | Francinia Protti-Alvarez

University of Leicester (Leicester, UK) students have cloned the DNA sequences responsible for degrading toluene, the university announced. The cloning of these sequences could help scientists prevent other oil-based chemicals from polluting the environment, the university adds. Toluene, when it is released, breaks down quickly into benzaldehyde and cresol, each of which is harmful to humans. When toluene enters the soil, it may contaminate ground water, and has been shown to cause damage to the leaves of plants, as well as having moderate toxicity for aquatic...

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