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Thread: Scientists develop tobacco plant which turns red when it detects landmines

  1. #1

    Scientists develop tobacco plant which turns red when it detects landmines

    http://www.mailonsunday.co.uk/scienc...landmines.html

    Scientists develop tobacco plant which turns red when it detects landmines

    By Ian Evans
    Last updated at 1:26 AM on 26th July 2008

    A plant that can detect landmines has been developed by scientists.

    The genetically-modified tobacco plant has a gene that triggers a red plant pigment found in tomatoes and apples.

    When the roots detect nitrogen oxide which leaks from landmines, the green leaves turn red about ten weeks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Wesley's Avatar
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    I guess that leaves the problem of planting the tobacco without exploding the mines. Maybe they can broadcast by air herbicide and the seed, thus avoiding having to drive over the field.

    they grow a lot of tobacco near me in Lancaster County PA. It's a pretty coddled crop there. It's grown in nurse beds and transplanted by hand into the field. However, wild tobacco is fairly aggressive. It'll be interesting to see how this works out.
    Last edited by Wesley; 07-27-2008 at 01:44 PM.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Wesley
    I guess that leaves the problem of planting the tobacco without exploding the mines. Maybe they can broadcast by air herbicide and the seed, thus avoiding having to drive over the field.

    they grow a lot of tobacco near me in Lancaster County PA. It's a pretty coddled crop there. It's grown in nurse beds and transplanted by hand into the field. However, wild tobacco is fairly aggressive. It'll be interesting to see how this works out.
    Wesley,

    The reason why they are able to do this in tobacco plants is because the cigarette industry invested so much money into studying the genetics of the tobacco plant and the viruses that infest the plant, including the tobacco mosaic virus, which is now a superb tool for inserting all sorts of genes into the tobacco plant. I think that they are seriously thinking of spraying seeds or seedlings of tobacco onto fields that have been mined, letting the plants grow and be able to determine whether or not they are close to a mine. There are millions of mines in countries like Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan and no easy way of getting rid of the mines. The mines, as you know, are maiming thousands of children every year. I hope that it works or at least helps.

    Wise.

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    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Young
    I think that they are seriously thinking of spraying seeds or seedlings of tobacco onto fields that have been mined, letting the plants grow and be able to determine whether or not they are close to a mine. There are millions of mines in countries like Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan and no easy way of getting rid of the mines.
    Wise.
    Regardless of it's effectiveness, wherever it's tired they should have a good supply to tobacco.

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