PAPER TREES by Rossi giorgia 5^E

WHEN WAS IT FIRST DONE?

Research on Genetically Modified Trees - including these Paper Trees - started in 1988 and it was based on concerns about our environment's problems. Since the first genetically modified tree has been a success, by 1999 many companies have been supporting this project and now they grow several such organisms.

FROM WHICH SPECIES THE GENE WAS EXTRACTED?

The gene used in this occasion is extracted from an herbaceous plant, in particular the "Ferula", which is native to the Mediterranean region east to central Asia.

Ferula

INTO WHICH SPECIES WAS IT INSERTED?

This gene was inserted into young poplar trees.

WHAT DOES THE GENE ENCODE?

The lignin from trees’ cells can easily break apart when they’re treated with a mild base at temperatures of 100 degrees C. This gene creates weak points in the chemical structure of lignin.

Genetically Modified Poplar Tree Leaf compared to a Natural Poplar Tree Leaf

WHAT WAS THE AIM TO DO SO?

The archenemy of the papermaker is lignin, which is a complex polymer found in the cell walls of most plants. Currently, lignin must be removed from wood through an expensive chemical - and energy - procedure known as the kraft process. These modified trees could avoid all these processes

Another important aspect is that researchers have demonstrated the ability to do so without adversely affecting the tree’s strength and it also could reduce the amount of chemicals and energy used in the papermaking process

WHERE IS IT ALLOW? IN WHICH COUNTRIES

This is legal in 17 countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Finland, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, UK, USA and Uruguay.

Credits:

Created with images by Picography - "tree trunk forest floor trunk"

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