Grow! That’s Nature’s prime directive to living things, and one that genetic engineers have harnessed for making powerful drugs such as human growth hormone. This time, University of Edinburgh scientist Peter Doerner has used genetic engineering to create plants that just plain grow faster and bigger-up to three times as big, in fact.
In 1996, Doerner discovered that a gene called cyc-1 helps control the rate at which plant cells divide. Now he has created a strain of Arabidopsis thaliana, a flowering mustard plant, with an extra copy of this gene that kicks in at just the right moment in the cell-division process. The payoff will come in crops like rice, which could reach maturity faster with the new gene inserted, enabling farmers to squeeze in an extra harvest.
Going bald? Lab-grown hair cells could be on the way
These biotech companies are reprogramming cells to treat baldness, but it’s still early days.
Tonga’s volcano blast cut it off from the world. Here’s what it will take to get it reconnected.
The world is anxiously awaiting news from the island—but on top of the physical destruction, the eruption has disconnected it from the internet.
A horrifying new AI app swaps women into porn videos with a click
Deepfake researchers have long feared the day this would arrive.
Our brains exist in a state of “controlled hallucination”
Three new books lay bare the weirdness of how our brains process the world around us.
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