Scientists Discovery the Missing Link in Bioluminescence
With bioluminescence—the process that makes fireflies glow—now a mainstay in medical research, scientists are reporting discovery of a “missing link” of its evolution, which represents one of the deepest mysteries about bioluminescence. It paves the way toward development of new enzymes that glow in different colors and are 10, 100 or 1,000 times brighter, they say in ACS’ journal Biochemistry.
V.R. Viviani and colleagues focus on luciferases, enzymes critical in producing the bioluminescent effect in fireflies, jellyfish and other creatures. Scientists have known that bioluminescence originated 400 million years ago in jellyfish, and more recently in fireflies and other beetles. But how? That has been a mystery, the source of controversy and the key to developing more versatile bioluminescent enzymes for medicine and biology…
(read more: PhysOrg)
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