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DuPont Makes Key Polymer With Corn Instead of Petroleum

Compiled By Jill Jusko DuPont & Co., Wilmington, Del., says it has manufactured a critical component of its newest polymer, Sorona, using a fermentation process based on corn sugar. Before this, the substance could only be produced from petrochemicals. The chemical was produced by DuPont and Tate & Lyle scientists at a pilot plant located at Tate & Lyle's Decatur, Ill., facility. Tate & Lyle PLC is one of two DuPont development partners in the effort. The other is Genencor International Inc., which is developing the biocatalyst for the process at its Palo Alto, Calif., research center. "We are extremely pleased with this development because it offers solid proof that biotechnology can and will deliver far-reaching, transformative benefits in a wide variety of areas," say Ellen J. Kullman, DuPont group vice president and general manager of DuPont Bio-Based Materials.

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