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Why have scientists developed purple tomatoes

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posted on Oct, 26 2008 @ 12:46 PM

Purple tomato 'may boost health'

Scientists have developed purple tomatoes which they hope may be able to keep cancer at bay. The fruit are rich in an antioxidant pigment called anthocyanin which is thought to have anti-cancer properties. A team from the John Innes Centre, Norwich, created the tomatoes by incorporating genes from the snapdragon flower, which is high in anthocyanin. The study, published in Nature Biotechnology, found mice who ate the tomatoes lived longer. This offers the potential to promote health through diet by reducing the impact of chronic disease Professor Cathie Martin John Innes Centre Anthocyanins, found in particularly high levels in berries such as blackberry, cranberry and chokeberry, have been shown to help significantly slow the growth of colon cancer cells. They are also thought to offer protection against cardiovascular disease and age-related degenerative diseases. There is also evidence that the pigments have anti-inflammatory properties, help boost eyesight, and may help stave off obesity and diabetes. The John Innes team is investigating ways to increase the levels of health-promoting compounds in more commonly eaten fruits and vegetables. Tomatoes already contain high levels of beneficial antioxidant compounds, such as lycopene and flavonoids. More benefit Professor Cathie Martin, from the centre, said: "Most people do not eat five portions of fruits and vegetables a day, but they can get more benefit from those they do eat if common fruit and veg can be developed that are higher in bioactive compounds." It is too early to say whether anthocyanins obtained through diet could help to reduce the risk of cancer Dr Lara Bennett Cancer Research UK The John Innes team took two genes from snapdragon that induce the production of anthocyanins in snapdragon flowers, and turned them on in tomato fruit. Anthocyanins accumulated in tomatoes at higher levels than anything previously achieved in both the peel and flesh of the fruit, giving them an intense purple colour. Tests on mice bred to be susceptible to cancer showed that animals whose diets were supplemented with the purple tomatoes had a significantly longer lifespan compared to those who received only normal red tomatoes. Professor Martin said: "This is one of the first examples of metabolic engineering that offers the potential to promote health through diet by reducing the impact of chronic disease. "And certainly the first example of a GMO [genetically modified organism] with a trait that really offers a potential benefit for all consumers." She said the the next step would be test the tomatoes on human volunteers. Exciting Dr Lara Bennett, of the charity Cancer Research UK, said: "It is exciting to see new techniques that could potentially make healthy foods even better for us. "But it is too early to say whether anthocyanins obtained through diet could help to reduce the risk of cancer. "We do know that eating a healthy, balanced diet that is rich in fibre, fruit and vegetables - and low in red and processed meat - is an important way to reduce your cancer risk." Dr Paul Kroon, of the Food Research Institute in Norwich, said the research was an "important study". "The technology offers great scope for altering colours of fruits and vegetables, and their content of potentially health-protective compounds." However, he said it would be wrong to assume the effects seen in mice would necessarily occur in humans. Anna Denny, a nutrition scientist for the British Nutrition Foundation, stressed there was no "magic bullet" against diseases such as cancer and heart disease. "Fruit and veg with higher levels of health-promoting compounds should not been seen as a replacement for eating a healthy balanced diet."

I was quite shocked at this article...especially the word choices (In Bold above)

posted on Oct, 26 2008 @ 12:54 PM
even more.... scientists have developed these tomatoes even though no conclusive evidence reflects whether anthocyanins obtained through diet could help to reduce the risk of cancer. I mean why bother creating a new fruit with ingredients that merely MIGHT be good for your health, but has not been proven as yet?

If you ask me, this is purely jumping the gun and trying to force the green light from society to accept genetically modified foods.

[edit on 10/26/2008 by corvin77]

[edit on 10/26/2008 by corvin77]

posted on Oct, 27 2008 @ 12:36 AM
What, may i ask, is your objection to the use of genetically modified foods? Note that i asked for 'your objection' so that i can get an understanding of how you feel about it before spending the time to explain the article to you.

Thanks, in appreciation, for indulging me in this request.

posted on Oct, 27 2008 @ 08:24 AM
I have many problems with genetically modified foods!

I suppose my biggest and main concern is that these foods will be created by the HONEST and UNCORRUPTED hand of man !! This is like opening pandoras box, so much power would be in those hands!!!

-Crop control (Controlling farmers output - seed prices would become like the oil price - as natural seed formation could be stunted by these means)
-Nutrition control (It would be impossible to to have indepentent regulator testing each newly created batch individually - even if you did, would they be completely honest?)
-For anyone that's not a scientist in this field, we only have to take MSM and governments word for its "Goodness", I mean honestly!

Lastly, when you start mucking about with nature and ecosystems, the end result is never predictable... there are so many possibilities and outcomes, not even speculation could cover them all, and by the time a problem is spotted, it might just be too late!

With all technological and medical "advances", none of my family members, in my family tree, in the past 250 years have shown higher life expectancies, infact its been quite the opposite.... I wonder why that is...

Now in this instance, a new fruit was developed, before its nutritional value was even proven to be beneficial...

.....Its like laying a new cable infrastucture for a new telephone system that hasn't been proven to work yet? It just doesnt make sense

[edit on 10/27/2008 by corvin77]

[edit on 10/27/2008 by corvin77]

posted on Nov, 3 2008 @ 05:57 PM
I guess its only me that finds this astonishing!

Not a one liner

posted on Nov, 3 2008 @ 06:32 PM
Not really. I am very pro GM, when it is safe and there are benefits at stake. The whole point og the GM debate is that we are creating new proteins from the DNA with a very precise point. Language of 'this' GM 'might' be useful has too much room for error for me. Maybe that I am not laissez faire enough, but it also strikes me as too dangerous for an unregulated free market.

[edit on 3-11-2008 by redled]

posted on Nov, 3 2008 @ 07:57 PM
There are many purple tomatos already . They are heritage seeds like Cherokee purple, purple Russian , black Brandy wine and black cherry and carbon all of these are old time tomatos . They all have a tomato taste but its off from a true tomato taste. But then again all store bought tomatoes dont taste like real home grown tomatoes the store bought ones are usually cross bread for picking green and ripening in transit and for better shipping and shelf life .

posted on Nov, 4 2008 @ 05:25 AM
My words werent even cold...

The GM genocide: Thousands of Indian farmers are committing suicide after using genetically modified crops

The price difference is staggering: £10 for 100 grams of GM seed, compared with less than £10 for 1,000 times more traditional seeds. But GM salesmen and government officials had promised farmers that these were 'magic seeds' - with better crops that would be free from parasites and insects. Indeed, in a bid to promote the uptake of GM seeds, traditional varieties were banned from many government seed banks. The authorities had a vested interest in promoting this new biotechnology. Desperate to escape the grinding poverty of the post-independence years, the Indian government had agreed to allow new bio-tech giants, such as the U.S. market-leader Monsanto, to sell their new seed creations. In return for allowing western companies access to the second most populated country in the world, with more than one billion people, India was granted International Monetary Fund loans in the Eighties and Nineties, helping to launch an economic revolution. But while cities such as Mumbai and Delhi have boomed, the farmers' lives have slid back into the dark ages. Though areas of India planted with GM seeds have doubled in two years - up to 17 million acres - many famers have found there is a terrible price to be paid. Far from being 'magic seeds', GM pest-proof 'breeds' of cotton have been devastated by bollworms, a voracious parasite. Nor were the farmers told that these seeds require double the amount of water. This has proved a matter of life and death.

Full article

"these seeds require double the amount of water?? huh??

The sad part is that its not only these poor farmers suffering, but the community as a whole on loss of crops!!

This article just shows how corrupt and disgusting this whole GM foods saga is becoming!

[edit on 11/4/2008 by corvin77]

posted on Nov, 5 2008 @ 04:07 PM
Corvin77 your post is exactly why Me and my better half have gone back to home gardening and canning . We have planted all heritage seeds or generations old hybrids free from genetic manipulation. After reading the pros and cons , we decided safe than sorry avoid GM foods. Reports of increase in diabetes in rats nervous disorders allergic reactions in some lab tests .

No thank you .

We Will stick to what mother nature intended .

edited for spelling

[edit on 5-11-2008 by Lostinthedarkness]

posted on Nov, 7 2008 @ 11:45 AM
reply to post by Lostinthedarkness

Its starting to seem like a very good idea!

It also stands to question how much of the food produce in stores are GM foods and not labelled as such!

Does anyone know if there are regulations regarding GM labelling?

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