Genetically modified wheat, which emits a peculiar odor, designed to deter aphids, failed in field tests that stressed the difficulty of using the disputed technology.
Scientists reported that the result was bad, but they seek to improve the process to achieve greater success in the future, stating that genetic modification offers a way to develop adaptable crops which do not need to spray pesticides.
Opponents, however, fear that such GM plants bear the risk of environmental pollution and may endanger the food chain.
The work of the British research Institute Rothamsted in southern England was the first test of culture, modified for the purpose of selection against insect pheromone or smell that drew protests from anti-GMO activists who threatened to destroy the plants
Despite the fact that the subject crop survived the attack of the people, he couldn't cope with aphids.
The results of a five year project, published in the journal Scientific Reports showed that GM wheat does not deter pests in the field, as expected, despite initial success in laboratory tests.
The aphid causes damage to wheat by sucking the sugar from shoots and spreading the virus that leads to extensive spraying of insecticides produced by companies such as Bayer and Syngenta.
A team of scientists Rothamsted added genes to make the wheat to produce a pheromone (E)-beta-farnesene that in vivo secrete other plants, including mint, and which acts as an alarm dispersing aphids.
Not sure why the crop of GM wheat has not worked as expected, but scientists reported that aphids may have just tuned in to the constancy of alarm, as people get used to the constant sounds of car alarms.
Now, scientists will seek to force the plant to produce concentrated pheromone emissions when approaching aphid, was reported by the study participants, who still see a future based on the pheromone repellents. The process control insects without spraying toxic insecticides is the beginning of an alternative approach.
Test Rothamsted, which was not supported by a commercial interest, it was relatively rare in the UK, given the political opposition to GMOs at European level and cost of conducting such a study. The study was fully funded by the British Council of biotechnology supported by the government.
Translated by the service "Yandex.Translation"