TCE Uptake by Transgenic Plants
Plants used for phytoremediation take up pollutants, then transport the chemicals to cells that store, detoxify, or release them to the air. Researchers are now engineering transgenic plants that have an enhanced ability to carry out these tasks.
Sharon Doty and her colleagues published the results of their efforts to genetically engineer plants for phytoremediation of soil and air contaminated with organic solvents. The researchers used Agrobacterium tumefaciens (Section 15.7) to deliver a mammalian gene into poplar plants. The gene encodes cytochrome P450, an enzyme involved in the breakdown of a range of organic molecules, including solvents such as TCE. FIGURE 28.1 shows data from one test on the resulting transgenic plants.
On day 6, what was the difference between the TCE content of air around planted transgenic plants and that around vector control plants?
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