popsci.com: Genetically Modified Algae Are Magnetic for Easier SeparationSubmitted by Chris Voteforsueski on Mon, 09/16/2013 - 18:49
By Clay Dillow Posted 10.19.2011 at 1:01 pm
"Proving that there’s always a different way to approach a problem, researchers at Los Alamos National Lab have devised a pretty clever method of algae harvesting that could take a major chunk out of the cost of algae-based biofuel production. And all they had to do was create a magnetic organism.
..."The team created their GM magnetic algae by lifting a gene from magnetotactic bacteria--those are bacteria that use the Earth’s magnetic field to get around--and dropping it into the algae. When expressed, the gene causes the production of magnetic nanoparticles in the algae just as it does in the bacteria. Those in turn can be used to manipulate the algae."...
Magnetic Algae: The wild algae on the left settles to the bottom of the test tube. The magnetic algae on the right sticks to the wall thanks to the magnet. Los Alamos National Laboratory via PhysOrg
An algae for food and fuel pond in Israel: