published Friday, February 8th, 2013

ORNL-led research team unlocks mercury mystery

  • photo
    Research program head Liyuan Liang shows samples of DNA associated with methymercury studies Wednesday at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Her team has identified two genes in microorganisms that are at least partly responsible for an environmental process that converts mercury into its most toxic form — methylmercury.
    Photo by The Knoxville News Sentinel /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

OAK RIDGE — An Oak Ridge-based research team has identified two genes in microorganisms that are responsible for an environmental process that converts mercury into its most toxic form — methylmercury.

The discovery is being hailed by scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory as a long-awaited breakthrough and a possible step toward minimizing the global health hazards of mercury in the environment.

The research results will be published in the prestigious journal Science.

Read more at Knoxnews.com.

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