Scientists created plants glowing in the dark

US, WASHINGTON (ORDO NEWS) — Russian scientists created the first ever-glowing plants. The autoluminescence property of them is encoded at the genetic level. The results of the study are published in the journal Nature Biotechnology.

Natural bioluminescence is poorly understood. Until recently, only the mechanism of luminescence of bacteria was completely deciphered. However, attempts to create stably luminous plants using the bacterial system were unsuccessful.

A little over a year ago, scientists at the Russian science startup Planta installed all the components necessary for bioluminescence in mushrooms. For the first time, the luminescence mechanism in a complex multicellular organism was completely deciphered.

In a new work, the authors of the discovery show that the luminescence system of fungi can be effectively transferred to plants. The transgenic tobacco plants they created glow at least ten times brighter compared to previous experiments.

The green glow comes from leaves, stems, roots and flowers, it can be seen with the naked eye, and can be photographed on ordinary cameras and smartphones.

Importantly, a steady glow does not prevent plants from growing and developing normally.

“We noticed that the metabolism of bioluminescent mushrooms and ordinary plants has much in common. And now we have successfully transferred the DNA necessary for the luminescence of mushrooms to plants, creating plants with stable illumination that surpasses all previous approaches in brightness,” the Russian Scientific Foundation, which supported the study, the project manager for the grant RNF words, doctor of chemistry, head of the Department of biomolecular chemistry at the Institute of Bioorganic chemistry of the Shemyakin and Ovchinnikov Academy of Sciences Ilya Yampo skogo.

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