The disease that sours oranges and leaves them half green, already ravaging citrus crops across the world, had reached the state’s storied groves. To slow the spread of the bacterium that causes the scourge, they chopped down hundreds of thousands of infected trees and sprayed an expanding array of pesticides on the winged insect that carries it. But the contagion could not be contained.
With a precipitous decline in Florida’s harvest predicted within the decade, the only chance left to save it, Mr. Kress believed, was one that his industry and others had long avoided for fear of consumer rejection.
They would have to alter the orange’s DNA — with a gene from a different species
posted by yeoz
on Jul 28, 2013 -
As the global climate changes, agriculture is sure to be affected. The Stern Review
explains that "developing countries - in particular the poorest - are heavily dependent on agriculture, the most climate-sensitive of all economic sectors." Working Group II
of the IPCC
says that: "Smallholder and subsistence farmers, pastoralists and artisanal fisherfolk will suffer complex, localised impacts of climate change (high confidence)." Meanwhile, some important staple crops are especially threatened
by rising temperatures (though genetic engineering may help
). You can experience a taste of it yourself
, with a climate change awareness fast, taking place on Tuesday, September 4th.
posted by sindark
on Aug 30, 2007 -
Many common food plants contain noxious and toxic antinutrients
designed to ward off predators, including humans. Tomatoes and Potatoes for example contain Glycoalkaloids which cause a Depressed central nervous system; kidney inflammation; carcinogenic; birth defects; reduced iron uptake. Can Genetically Engineered strains increase these naturally occuring antinutrients and toxins? (more inside
posted by stbalbach
on Nov 8, 2003 -
First Birds with teeth in 70 million years
. Vicious toothed, flying microraptors once darkened the Jurassic skies. Now, scientists
have learned to activate the dormant, vestigal avian "tooth gene" and so coaxed chicken embryos into growing teeth. From the grave, Alfred Hitchcock enviously quips - "a messy thing indeed when toothed birds kill a man". Meanwhile the French are appalled: “quand les poules auront des dents”, which translates to “when hens have teeth”, is analogous to the English “pigs might fly”. Coming soon: flying pigs.
But there might be a baldness cure in this new research. I'll remember that as the flocks of mutant raptor-fowl move in for the kill.
posted by troutfishing
on Jun 4, 2003 -
Since Genetically Modified Organisms are a big no-no in Europe, some scientists
are now focusing their efforts on TILLING (Targeting Induced Local Lesions in Genomes), a novel technology for rapid selection of a mutation in any gene from mutant plant, through the use of a mutagen, Ethyl Methanesulfonate (EMS)
Will this method be seen as less dangerous than Genetic Engineering à la Monsanto?
During my search on this topic, I stumbled on this entertaining story about DIY genegeneering
posted by titboy
on Oct 9, 2002 -
They're farther along than I thought...
You may have heard about Nexia Biotechnology, who have put spider genes into goats to get milk with spider silk protein in it. I thought it was still in the research phase, but Nexia have apparently gone to market
with the stuff. They've signed agreements with several manufacturers to produce spider silk protein-based products such as lightweight ballistic armor (like Kevlar, only lighter and non-toxic to produce) for the armed forces and super-strong sutures and prosthetic ligaments for medical supply companies.
posted by RylandDotNet
on Jul 21, 2002 -
What the law show say about cloning.
Francis Fukuyama and Robert Wright, who have written
about technology and "societal evolution", discuss the pros and cons of genetic engineering. This is not a discussion about the finer points of technology, but rather the philosophical implications of moving forward.
posted by mkultra
on Jul 12, 2002 -
Surely Pork and Apple?
The leader of a maverick team of biotechnicians has created Pigs with an implant of spinach genes. Lambs are to have mint sauce implant in the near future?
posted by Spoon
on Jan 31, 2002 -
Ebola is for wimps!
Some Australian scientists were trying to come up with a mouse contraceptive vaccine, for use in pest control. And they succeeded. Unfortunately, the virus they created works by killing mice before they can breed, and killing them very very well. Oh, and it's extremely vaccine-resistant: 100% death without vaccine, 50% with. And any kid with a Li'l Johnny Gene Engineering Kit could conceivably make a human version. Anyone got some smallpox virus laying around?
posted by aaron
on Jan 10, 2001 -
The recent thread on genetic engineering
sent me on a path to find some astounding photos
. Ignore the ugly yellow background and just click on links to photos. Pages like this make me want to put more effort into my lepidopteran interests.
posted by plinth
on Sep 1, 2000 -
From today's Asimba.com newletter:
"Like most people, you're probably bored with your teeth. Every day the same old incisors and molars. Cheer up! Soon you'll be able to grow new teeth thanks to genetic engineering.
Order now and receive a second row of teeth free."
posted by Tubes
on Aug 25, 2000 -