Tomatoes with high amino acid content
Media

Tomatoes with high amino acid content

Gene-edited tomatoes have recently become available on the market in Japan. The tomatoes represent an innovation. They were modified using the CRISPR/Cas9 precision breeding technique to improve their characteristics, including higher production of amino acids.

Monday, October 4, 2021

Japanese company Sanatech Seed has introduced a red Sicilian tomato variety on the market. As “RTS” reports, this represents the first food bred using CRISPR/Cas9 that has been approved for sale. The new, very healthy tomatoes have an especially high content of the amino acid GABA (gamma amino butter acid). This neurotransmitter plays a key role in many central nervous functions, and it may help, for example, improve well-being, reduce stress, lower blood pressure and improve sleep quality.


A fine scalpel rather than a heavy hammer
CRISPR/Cas9 involves precision breeding that makes it possible to cut the genome of a plant more precisely than ever before. The two scientists who discovered the method were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2020. Standard mutagenesis, which is also used in organic breeding, has been allowed for decades. This involves the use of radioactive or chemical treatment to alter the genome in an non-targeted manner. The resulting plants have nothing “unnatural” in them. The same is true for precision breeding applications. The advantage of the latter method is that it is a targeted process. While traditional mutagenesis can be likened to a sledgehammer, CRISPR is a scalpel. And there is no difference between foods modified this way and those developed using traditional breeding or natural mutations. For this reason, in many countries – including Japan – gene-edited plants are not classified as GMO (genetically modified organisms).

Related articles

Less honey - rising prices
Media

Less honey - rising prices

The cold spring and wet summer had a massive impact on bees and honey production. Compared to last year, harvest volumes have really collapsed this year. Swiss honey is becoming a scarce commodity and prices are likely to rise.

Content in German

Climate change: "You have to invest heavily in innovation".
Media

Climate change: "You have to invest heavily in innovation".

On the occasion of the 26th Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Matthias Berninger, Global Head of Public Affairs, Science & Sustainability at Bayer, talks about the potential of new fertilisers for climate protection.

The temptation of the popular
Media

The temptation of the popular

Agriculture is one of the first victims of climate change. At the same time, it causes a significant share of global greenhouse gases. New technologies are the key to minimising the problem. But experts in particular are finding it increasingly difficult to recognise innovations as a solution to climate change.

Content in German

Making vanilla flavoring out of plastic waste
Media

Making vanilla flavoring out of plastic waste

Using bacteria, researchers in Scotland have succeeded in making vanillin out of plastic waste. This opens up the possibility of transforming plastic waste into a product that is in demand all over the world, thereby benefiting both the environment and food producers.

More contributions from Media