Microbial alchemy is what we’re doing – transforming gold from something that has no value into a solid, precious metal that’s valuable,” said Kazem Kashefi, assistant professor of microbiology and molecular genetics.
He and Adam Brown, associate professor of electronic art and intermedia, found the metal-tolerant bacteria Cupriavidus metallidurans can grow on massive concentrations of gold chloride – or liquid gold, a toxic chemical compound found in nature.
In fact, the bacteria are at least 25 times stronger than previously reported among scientists, the researchers determined in their art installation, “The Great Work of the Metal Lover,” which uses a combination of biotechnology, art and alchemy to turn liquid gold into 24-karat gold. The artwork contains a portable laboratory made of 24-karat gold-plated hardware, a glass bioreactor and the bacteria, a combination that produces gold in front of an audience.
Brown and Kashefi fed the bacteria unprecedented amounts of gold chloride, mimicking the process they believe happens in nature. In about a week, the bacteria transformed the toxins and produced a gold nugget.
Originally posted by varikonniemi
This would be to gold markets what e-cat would be to energy markets. If only it would not need goldchloride to begin with. There are already easy methods for making gold from goldchloride. Certainly easier than growing a bacteria.edit on 2-10-2012 by varikonniemi because: correction
Originally posted by solarstorm
If this bacteria can be found in the digestive tract of humans, no one is gonna flush their toilets anymore.
Originally posted by AfterInfinity
The moment these bacteria become a common practice, is the moment that even the stuff backing our worthless money becomes worthless.