chloroplasts in humans?
markwell at unlinfo.unl.edu
Sun Feb 26 08:57:20 EST 1995
Another issue concerning introducing chloroplasts into animal cells is
that the energy in light is not trivial. The photosynthetic apparatus
is highly efficient at harvesting sunlight. Each quantum captured,
however, must be handled with the greatest care and respect. The
potential for photodynamic damage is very great. When things go wrong
in a leaf, they go very wrong! The technical term is necrosis. There
are some monocot mutants (tigrina) which cannot control the production
of photosynthetic pigments and produce leaves with alternating bands
of green and necrotic tissue.
Putting leaf pigments into a cell is not unlike putting a nuclear
reactor into your cellar. As long as things go well, they go very
well. However . ..
John Markwell Phone: 402-472-2924
Dept. Biochemistry FAX: 402-472-7842
University of Nebraska Internet: markwell at unl.edu
Lincoln, NE 68583-0718
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