Entertainment
Japan scientists find ageing cure - for flowers
Publish Date: Jul 04, 2014
Japan scientists find ageing cure - for flowers
This handout picture taken by the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO) on March 17, 2013 shows a morning glory whose flowers stayed for 24 hours - violet flower. AFP/PHOTO
  • mail
  • img
newvision

Japanese scientists say they have found a way to slow down the ageing process in flowers by up to a half, meaning bouquets could remain fresh for much longer.

Researchers at the National Agriculture and Food Research Organisation in Tsukuba, east of Tokyo, said they had found the gene believed to be responsible for the short shelf-life of flowers in one Japanese variety of morning glory.

"Morning glory" is the popular name for a hundreds of species of flowering plants whose short-lived blooms usually unfold early in the day and are gone by nightfall.

By suppressing the gene -- named "EPHEMERAL1" -- the lifespan of each flower was almost doubled, said Kenichi Shibuya, one of the lead researchers in a study carried out jointly with Kagoshima University in southern Japan.

"Unmodified flowers started withering 13 hours after they opened, but flowers that had been genetically modified stayed open for 24 hours," he said.

This means the plant has fresh purple flowers alongside the paler blooms from the previous day, he said.

"We have concluded that the gene is linked to petal ageing," Shibuya told AFP by telephone on Thursday.

The finding could lead to developing methods to extend the life of cut flowers, he added.

"It would be unrealistic to modify genes of all kinds of flowers but we can look for other ways to suppress the (target) gene... such as making cut flowers absorb a solution that prevents the gene from becoming active," Shibuya said.

For some flowers, such as carnations, florists currently use chemicals to inhibit ethylene, a plant hormone which sometimes causes blooms to ripen.

But ethylene is not involved in the ageing of some popular flowers, such as lilies, tulips and irises.

A gene similar to EPHEMERAL1 could be responsible for petal ageing in these plants, Shibuya said, meaning the ability to suppress it would extend their life.AFP



 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Autopsy to probe Bobbi Brown
Coroners will perform an autopsy on the body of Whitney Houston's daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown as required in "known or suspected non-natural deaths," they said Monday....
Kanye West storms off stage at Pan Am gig
WHEN it comes to Kanye West’s on-stage antics, the question always remains: what’s next?...
Coca Cola Rated Next; Doreen, Perez bow out
It was a rather different feel this last Sunday at the Coca-Cola rated next sing it live show that happens in Ndere Center. The contestants wowed in their outfits that seemed to suit each of their performance....
Whitney Houston
Bobbi Kristina Brown, the only child of pop legend Whitney Houston and singer Bobby Brown, died Sunday aged 22...
Court rubbishes 50 Cent
RAPPER 50 Cent has been ordered to pay another $2 million to a woman over a sex tape, despite his pleas that he was short of cash...
Enid Mirembe crowned Miss Tourism Busoga
22-year-old Enid Mirembe was crowned Miss Tourism Busoga region on Saturday evening at Bax Bar and Restaurant in Jinja. Enid beat off competition from 9 other girls that made it to the finals....
Should government create more constituencies?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter