UC Irvine scientists and Australian chemists have managed to unboil egg whites, and they say that this innovation could dramatically reduce costs for cancer treatments, food production and other segments of the $160 billion global biotechnology industry. Gregory Weiss, UCI professor of chemistry and molecular biology & biochemistry, says: “Yes, we have invented a way to unboil a hen egg. In our paper, we describe a device for pulling apart tangled proteins and allowing them to refold. We start with egg whites boiled for 20 minutes at 90 degrees Celsius and return a key protein in the egg to working order.” Continue reading for a video of the process and more information.
Weiss adds: “It’s not so much that we’re interested in processing the eggs; that’s just demonstrating how powerful this process is. The real problem is there are lots of cases of gummy proteins that you spend way too much time scraping off your test tubes, and you want some means of recovering that material.”