Sydney, Feb 2 (UNI) Stop finding stupid ways of cutting an onion to avoid misty-eyes and continue slicing and dicing to add flavour to your dishes as scientists have created a 'no-tears' onion.
Using gene-silencing technology, the scientists have switched off the gene behind the enzyme that make us cry. The breakthrough was made by the the New Zealand-based research institute Crop and Food with the use of Australian-developed biotechnology.
''We had the ability to insert DNA into onions, using gene-silencing technology developed by Australian scientists, which creates a sequence that switches off the tear-inducing gene in the onion so it doesn't produce the enzyme. So when you slice the vegetable, it doesn't produce tears.'' the Herald Sun quoted the institute's senior scientist, Colin Eady, as saying.
He said by stopping sulphur compounds from being converted into the tearing agent and redirecting them into compounds responsible for flavour and health, the process could even improve the taste of the onion.
Japanese scientists have earlier proved that the tearing agent was not produced spontaneously by cutting onions, but was controlled by an enzyme. The scientists are now hoping to create onions with nice, sweet aromas associated with it without that bitter, pungent, tear-producing factor.
So, lets hope to have a prototype onion hitting the market in a decade's time.
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