Silencing Pests: Altered plants make RNA that keeps insects at bay

By Sarah Webb, 15:58 PM April 15, 2008

Two teams of researchers have modified plants to produce genetic material that disables critical genes in insects that eat the plants. The technique could provide a new strategy for agricultural-pest control.

Looking for a new way to protect corn plants, James Roberts with Monsanto in Chesterfield, Mo., and his colleagues turned to a mechanism known as RNA interference, in which segments of the genetic molecule RNA block the translation of information from a target gene (SN: 7/2/05, p. 7). Th...

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