Designing Flowers For A Bee-Less Future

The flower inthe  dark with the bioluminescent light guides clearly visible

The flower inthe dark with the bioluminescent light guides clearly visible

The same flower in daylight

The same flower in daylight

A flower that looks like any other flower in daylight, but turn off the lights and its unique engineered bioluminescent light guides become visible. Specialized cell structures  on the flower called lumocysts express the luxABCDE genes from the bioluminescent bacterium Photobacterium phosphoreum giving the flower tissue the ability to make light. The quality of the  light produced by these bacteria, and now the plant, is unique and it  has powerful  lure-like qualities so that when bees become extinct, the plants will attract and be pollinated by night-flying insects like moths. Night feeding carnivorous plants might also be developed though this technology.

6 thoughts on “Designing Flowers For A Bee-Less Future

  1. Intriguing.
    Is the bacteria ‘painted’ on the flower or is it generated inside the flower through botanical engineering by yourself? I’m just wondering about the potential of such a concept.
    What is your next step with this development?

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