- They isolated four key genes involved in the production of natural sex pheromones of two moths: the bird cherry ermine moth (Yponomeuta evonymella) and the orchard ermine moth (Yponomeuta padella). In the wild, females emit these pheromones to attract male suitors, Science explains.
- Genes that code for pheromone biosynthesis were injected into the tobacco plant Nicotiana benthamiana via bacteria cultures (pictured).
- By doing so, the team got the tobacco plants to express genes for moth pheromone production.
- The result was a fatty, alcohol-based product that closely mimics natural sex pheromones.
Turning tobacco plants into factories for cleaner pesticides
— By Janet Fang on March 2, 2014, 8:26 PM PST
I have been given to understand that neo-nicotinoid insecticides used on commercial crops are already suspected as culprits for the Colony Collapse Syndrome that's killing honeybees (and heaven knows how many other innocent insects).
In the experiement, the goal and the results were species specific, which is really interesting. If that could be extended to the commercial phase, this could actually be very helpful in reducing collateral damage to non-target species. If, as in pesticides and BT GMO crops, the trap is cross species, then it could be devastating. The devil's in the details, no?
GMO plants are not environmentally friendly (requires more water, lower crop yields, etc.) and are very dangerous (lower nutritional values, causes cancer, reproductive problems, ADD/ADHD, Gluten sensitivities, Asthma, etc.), which is exactly why GMOs are either banned or require labeling in many other countries.
GMO tobacco sounds even more dangerous, as tobacco is already a dangerous plant.
@cmwade1977 As I've said before, perhaps not here, every dog you meet is a GMO wolf, using ancienttraditionalmeans of Modifying the Gene pool. I happen to think that dogs bred to fight other dogs are an evil digression, but in all cases it's the target, not the mechanism, that's at fault.
Tobacco is not inherently a dangerous plant. In fact it is botanically quite useful.
Tobacco genetically engineered to produce pesticides is not grown to smoke or to eat, so the danger such a product would pose would be minimal.
Not all GE plants are created equal, and even if some what you allege is true, it won't all be true for all GE plants.
Some banning and labeling may be sensible, but not all of it. Blanket banning or labeling is just as foolish as any blanket policy.