Biotech Updates

Plants Could More Efficiently Use Light for Food Production

June 1, 2012

Leaf pigments that are not associated with photosynthesis may better be eliminated from the system so that plants can produce more food. This is the conclusion of the paper published by the researchers from Wageningen University in the journal Plant Cell.

An experiment on the effectiveness of photosynthesis under different lighting conditions was conducted at the University greenhouse.  Results showed that plants can adapt to the color of light in their place of habitat for efficient photosynthesis. Specific color combinations of light increases photosynthesis more than in the presence of single light color.

The researchers also found that leaf pigments that are not directly involved in photosynthesis are considered as "waste" light as these colors absorb the light but are not used for photosynthesis. These findings can be applied in the development of crops to produce more food by reducing wasteful colored light present in greenhouses.

The article can be found in Dutch at