Bioglow’s Starlight Avatar is the World’s First Light Producing Plant

by , 01/14/14

Bioglow Plants, autoluminescent plant, starlight avatar, light producing plant, living light

Missouri-based Bioglow has been working on light-producing plants for a number of years and finally has one that they can sell. Starlight Avatar™ is an auto luminescent plant that generates light through its own pathways and does not require UV light or chemical additives. The light producing plant was made by taking an ornamental Nicotiana alata plant and introducing the light-emitting pathway from marine bacteria into its chloroplast genome. The genetically modified plant then glows a soft blue-green in the dark and could be used for decorative purposes, but is hardly bright enough to read with.

Bioglow hopes to improve their techniques and strengthen the light production capabilities. They foresee a time when the plants are used as decorative landscaping that could eliminate the need for night time lighting and decrease emissions from electricity use. Bioglow also hopes to create plants the emit red or other colored lights and maybe even use the plants to serve pollution or stress sensors.

Want your very own light producing plant? At the end of January, Bioglow will be auctioning off 20 Starlight Avatar™ plants with a starting bid of $1. The plants will come in their own cultivation boxes and are expected to produce light through their lifespan, which lasts about 2-3 months.



Images ©Dan Saunders and Bioglow

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  1. Patrick La Rose March 2, 2015 at 10:56 am

    Who thought this was a good idea? More Genetically modified crap no one knows is safe but who cares it looks good? Please do not buy this, it only encourages them to take risks splicing together genes we have no way of knowing what will happen. I’d buy it if they tested it out and proved safe but they don’t test and don’t care as long as it makes them money.

  2. Andrea Johnson April 29, 2014 at 4:41 pm
  3. rimmon February 17, 2014 at 1:15 am

    can this be done with bamboo too? like the golden yellow bamboo?

  4. Herbert Harper February 10, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Funny… Popular Science magazine had an article way back in the 1970’s on how tobacco companies were using lightening bug genes to track genetic combinations in tobacco plants and had glowing plant way back then. So this is hardly a first…

  5. MICHAEL GUNTER January 17, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    I will await the pollution and stress sensor plants with anxious anticipation, but as for the lighting solution, I would rather stick with the one with a light switch on it.

  6. biyamaru January 15, 2014 at 12:41 am

    Why does this plant only last 2-3 months?

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