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International Team of Biologists Create New Tomato Using Genome Editing
Posted by: Prof. Dr. M. Raupp (IP Logged)
Date: October 09, 2018 07:01AM

For the first time ever, an international team of scientists from Brazil,
the United States, and Germany has created a new crop from a wild plant
within a single generation using the modern genome editing process

The team used Solanum pimpinellifolium as the parent plant species, a wild
tomato relative from South America, and the progenitor of modern cultivated
tomato. The wild plant's fruits are as small as the size of peas and the
yield is low, but are more aromatic and contains more lycopene than modern

The researchers modified the wild tomato using "multiplex CRISPR-Cas9" in
such a way that offspring plants bore small genetic modifications in six
genes that were recognized by researchers as the genetic key to features in
the domesticated tomato. The modified wild tomato bears fruits three times
larger, which corresponds to the size of a cherry tomato. There is now 10
times the number of fruits, and their shape is more oval than the round wild
fruit. This property is popular because, when it rains, round fruits split
open faster than oval fruits. Another important new property is that the
lycopene content in the new tomato is more than twice as high as in the wild


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