Scientists at the University of California Irvine have figured out how to unboil an egg. And they didn't do it because they decided they'd prefer to have their eggs scrambled. Because proteins can form incorrectly and become unusable, these researchers were looking for a way to dismantle their mishaps rather than getting rid of them and starting all over again.
So, how did eggs help them attempt to solve the problem? When an egg white gets boiled, the proteins become entwined, making the whites hard. Scientists were able to get them to break apart in a two-step process. They first injected urea into the solid white mass. Then, they used a vortex fluid device to force the mass into the form they wanted.
If this can be done to an egg, the researchers are hoping to apply the same process to expensive proteins like antibodies. This type of method could make the creation of proteins used in cancer drugs faster and cheaper, which could potentially help to lower the cost of pricey and vital medications many patients rely on.
As Gregory Weiss, professor of chemistry and molecular biology and biochemistry at UC Irvine, told The Guardian, "I can't predict how much money it will save, but I can [predict] this will save a ton of time, and time is money."
Watch the video above to learn more about scientists' discovery on how to unboil eggs.