Researchers have unbarred a genetic formula behind some of a brightest and many vibrant colors and organic paints in nature. The paper, published in a journal PNAS, is a preliminary research on genetics of constructional color – as seen in moth wings and peacock feathers – and paves an approach for genetic research in an accumulation of structurally engineered organisms.
Flavobacterium is a form of a bacteria that packs together in colonies that furnish distinguished lead colors, which come not from pigments, but from their inner structure, that reflects light during certain wavelengths. Scientists are still undecided as to how these surprisingly vibrant structures are genetically engineered by nature, however. The researchers compared genetic information to visual properties and anatomy of wild and deteriorated bacterial colonies to know how genes umpire a color of a colony.
By genetically mutating a bacteria, the researchers altered their measure or their ability to move, that altered a geometry of these colonies. By changing their geometry, they altered their colors: they converted a cluster in a whole from blue to red. They also discovered means to emanate duller coloration or make a color disappear entirely.
The researchers say these engineered bacterial colonies could one day be used to grow organic paints, biodegradable and non-toxic paints and coatings in whatever color is needed. This research is a collaboration between the University of Cambridge and Hoekmine BV, a Dutch enterprise. This could lead to ‘growth’ of organic paints instead of manufacturing them.