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Friday, October 12, 2012

World's First True Blue Roses Naturally

world first true natural blue Rose
Suntory Ttrue Blue Rose 'Applause'
first time displayed in Tokyo in 2009 
True blue roses are rare to find even today. Generally we see the blue roses in the market are either dyed or created through crossbreeding. Blue roses created by traditional hybridizing techniques called Hybrid tea roses look like purple roses. The gene of the enzyme that produces the blue pigment, Delphinidin, is not found naturally in rose petals to begin with. For the delphinidin in the flower to appear blue the plant must be able to maintain a level of acidity within the cell to make the pigment appear blue.

Japanese distiller and beverage manufacturer Suntory Ltd. began its quest for the blue roses in a joint venture with Australian biotechnology firm Florigene Ltd. in 1990. Since roses do not naturally possess the gene for delphinidin, genetic engineers needed to transfer the gene from another plant that had the gene.
World's further dream
World's further Dream 

Their first attempts were to move the delphinidin gene from petunia. They were not successful at using this version of the gene in the rose, but they were able to move the delphinidin gene from petunia into carnation. The first blue carnations were marketed in Japan, North America and Australia by 1997 under the brand name 'Moondust'.

Suntory's genetic engineers had finally got success in their research in 2004. They extracted the gene that produces blue pigment in pansies and activated it inside the roses. The petals of Suntory's blue roses contain nearly 100 percent of the blue pigment. They also used genetic machinery to suppress the red pigments naturally present in roses. With nearly 100% blue-pigmented petals, blue rose 'APPLAUSE' is the world's first naturally blue rose went on sale in Tokyo in 2009 and first time exported  in North America in 2011.

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