Purple rice could combat cancer, diabetes and heart disease but experts say it’s too difficult to produce

PURPLE rice with the potential to combat cancer and heart disease has been developed.

The colour comes from high levels of pigments called anthocyanins, also found in blueberries and red cabbage.

They are rich in antioxidants which reduce damage to cells.

The levels in the genetically engineered rice can cut the risk of certain cancers, heart disease, ­diabetes and other chronic disorders, claim the Chinese scientists.

But purple rice will not be in shops any time soon because it is so difficult to produce.

The boffins have only just developed a way to insert the eight genes needed to produce anthocyanin into the plant.

South China Agricultural University in Guangdong will now check the safety of the rice as a bio­fortified food.

They also hope to simplify the process and create health-boosting purple maize, wheat and barley.

Lead researcher Dr Yao-Guang Liu said of the study, published in journal Molecular Plant: “This is the first demonstration of such complex synthetic engineering in plants.”

Source: https://www.thesun.co.uk/living/3899269/purple-rice-could-combat-cancer-diabetes-and-heart-disease-but-experts-say-its-too-difficult-to-produce/

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