genetically modified

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

Genetic engineering of plants has come a long way in recent years. It was first used to make more robust crops, then more nutritious and efficient crops. Now, scientists at the University of New Hampshire are tweaking tea plants to create an un-caffeinated variety.

Camellia sinensis is the plant from which virtually all caffeinated teas derive. UNH neuroscience major Laura Van Beaver has been working to flip one particular gene like a switch, which changes the plant in a significant way.

iStockPhoto

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: How are monarch butterflies doing today? They used to pass through my area in big numbers but in the last few years there seem to be many fewer.                  -- Bill Wright, Erie, PA

Photo Credit I woz ere, via Flickr Creative Commons

Produced with Emma Ruddock