Military preparedness means testing ammunition and ordinates in controlled field trials, as well as decommissioning of obsolete weaponry. The result is a significant environmental deposit of residues of TNT and RDX, two explosives used in the production of military hardware. These compounds are environmentally persistent and leach into groundwater. They represent significant environmental toxins near military bases. Dr. Liz Rylott and her team at the University of York have developed plants capable of inactivating these compounds. Plants take up RDX and TNT, however, these compounds remain stable within the plant. Using genes from unusual bacterial species, plants have been engineered to inactivate these compounds, turning them essentially into fertilizer. This work is an exciting example of how genetic engineering can be used to solve a critical environmental problem. Follow Dr. Rylott at @LizRylott # COLABRA Talking Biotech is brought to you by Colabra – an R&D platform that brings your lab’s world-changing research together in one shared space. Learn more at https://www.colabra.app/ # TALKING BIOTECH Twitter: https://twitter.com/talkingbiotech Website: https://www.colabra.app/podcasts/talking-biotech/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/colabrahq The Talking Biotech podcast is distinct from Dr. Kevin Folta's teaching and research roles at the University of Florida. The views expressed on the show are those of Dr. Folta and his guests, and do not reflect the opinions of the university or Colabra.
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