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Could jellyfish help us keep microplastic out of the ocean?

An EU-funded project proposes to target microplastic pollution and jellyfish overpopulation with one ingenious solution.

Climate Change and Environment icon Climate Change and Environment

Millions of tons of plastic are washed out to sea every year. Breaking down into micro- and nanoplastics, they threaten marine life and contribute to climate change. At the same time, climate change and overfishing has led to exploding jellyfish populations. Addressing both issues at the same time, GoJelly proposes harvesting the mucus produced by jellyfish species to create filters that remove plastic particles from wastewater before it reaches the ocean. The project has now been featured in the new CORDIS series of explanatory videos titled Make the Connection. To build the filters, medusae are harvested using a net and then transferred to a funnel where they secrete the mucus. The collected mucus is freeze-dried and inserted into a cylinder-shaped filtering device where the dried mucus layer is held in place by a layer of sand. The GoJelly project also developed concepts for turning the rest of the jellyfish biomass into useful products. “The medusae can be processed for human food or aquaculture feed, as fertiliser or for the extraction of collagen for cosmetic products,” says Jamileh Javidpour, who worked on the project. Find out more about the GoJelly project. ‘Make the connection with EU-science’ is a series of explanatory videos focusing on the scientific content and exploitation aspects of EU research projects.


GoJelly, jellyfish, medusae, microplastic, nanoplastics, biofilters, wastewater treatment, edible jellyfish