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Researchers make tomatoes that contain high levels of vitamin D.  Crispr-Cas9 genetic engineering technology is used to produce healthy foods.

Researchers make tomatoes that contain high levels of vitamin D. Crispr-Cas9 genetic engineering technology is used to produce healthy foods.

Researchers in the UK, using Crispr-Cas9 genetic engineering technology, have succeeded in producing tomatoes with higher levels of vitamin D3, which can provide Brits with vitamin D during the winter months when the sun doesn’t shine much in the UK. Professor Jay Bobby of the University of Southampton tells the Guardian about chopped tomatoes:

“Tomatoes that are genetically modified to accumulate vitamin D3 at levels above the recommended dietary guidelines could lead to better health for many, especially since tomatoes are a widely accessible and easily eaten food.”

Unlike what we usually call genetically modified (GMO) food, Crispr-Cas9 does not add genes from any other organism, the technology only edits the genes present in the organism being modified. In the UK, this means that genetically modified tomatoes could potentially be approved as food in a British bill that was introduced on genetically modified foods.

At present, researchers have only grown genetically modified tomatoes in the laboratory under UV lamps. However, it is hoped that we can start growing tomatoes outdoors in the future. When we can see chopped tomatoes in British grocery stores, there is no information yet about them.

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