We have a huge problem where plastic is concerned, and it’s going to take a long time to fix. However, don’t fret just yet because researchers might have just come across an eco-friendly substitute for plastic. Made from squid’s teeth!
This substitute is called squid protein, and as you might guess, it comes from a squid, though we’re not certain if all squids can produce it. Here’s the thing, researchers have stated that they’ve managed to extract the protein from a squid’s tooth, which is located on its arm.
Apparently, the protein can be processed into films and fibers. From there, it could be used to aid in the creation of a plastic substitute, one that can be recycled easily without a lot of fuss. Not only that, but it can also be made to create smart clothes for monitoring our overall health.
The information was recently published in the journal, Frontiers in Chemistry, and if it goes on to grab serious attention, the world could be well on its way of ridding itself of plastic once and for all. Although we’re not sure how the squid will feel about all that dentistry work at their expense.
“Nature produces a variety of smart materials capable of environmental sensing, self-healing, and exceptional mechanical function. These materials, or biopolymers, have unique physical properties that are not readily found in synthetic polymers like plastic. Importantly, biopolymers are sustainable and can be engineered to enhance their physical properties,” explains lead author Melik Demirel.
We will definitely keep our eyes on this research for future updates, so stay tuned.