New water and wastewater treatment technologies are required to meet the demands created by emerging contaminants and resource recovery needs, yet technology development is a slow and uncertain process. Through evolution, nature has developed highly selective and fast-acting proteins that could help address these issues, but research and application have been limited, often due to assumptions about stability and economic feasibility. Here we highlight the potential advantages of cell-free, protein-based water and wastewater treatment processes (biocatalysis and biosorption), evaluate existing information about their economic feasibility, consider when a protein-based treatment process might be advantageous, and highlight key research needs.
Hutchison, J. M., Mayer, B. K., Vega, M., Chacha, W. E., & Zilles, J. L. (2021). Making Waves: Biocatalysis and Biosorption: Opportunities and Challenges Associated with a New Protein-Based Toolbox for Water and Wastewater Treatment. Water research X, 12, 100112. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wroa.2021.100112
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