Kickstarter might be better known for funding films and hardware projects, but it’s now getting its first synthetic biology proposal. A Singularity University alum, a Stanford post-doc and a Stanford Ph.D. are looking to use synthetic biology and software from startup Genome Compiler to creatingplants that glow.
While the first several generations of plants might be weaker at emitting light, the long-term idea is to replace electric or gas lighting with natural lighting from plants.
“We live in a world that is generating too much carbon dioxide,” said Antony Evans, who is one of the three people behind the project. “Nature has figured out ways of creating energy that don’t require so much CO2 use, and what we really want to do is awaken people to the potential of that. Instead of having all these expensive street lights, why don’t we get plants?”
With the project, they’re inserting bioluminescence genes into a small flowering plant called Arabidopsis that’s part of the mustard family.
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