P. DUMAS / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY P. DUMAS / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Transgenic melon research. Technician monitors the respiration of genetically engineered (transgenic) melon plants by computer. Plant respiration is a measure of photosynthesis, plant growth and viability. These transgenic plants contain a gene that delays the ripening of melon fruit. Melon fruit normally ripens in 3-4 days and must be sold 4 days thereafter before it rots. Ethylene gas emitted by the fruit causes its own ripening. The transplanted gene reduces ACC-oxidase and blocks this ethylene gas pathway of ripening. Transgenic melon fruit thus keep for 50 days without rotting, while fresh taste and smell of the fruit is main- tained. Research at E.N.S.A.T.in Toulouse, France.
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