Worlds first Blue Lily developed in Japan

The Niigata Prefectural Government on May 9 together with Suntory has succeeded in developing the world’s first blue lily using genetic recombination technology. The produced lilies are still a purplish color, so the researchers will continue working on development to make the color bluer and market the flowers. Because lilies do not hold genes for making themselves blue, researchers combined the blue-causing genes of Campanulas with pink lilies to reach their goal.

Niigata Prefecture began the research in 1998, and in 2002 it succeeded in establishing the basic techniques for combining particular genes into lilies. Since 2006 it has been working with Suntory, who has succeeded in making blue roses and blue carnations, and in September of last year it applied for an international patent.

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