In literature and folklore (and video games, sometimes), the blue rose signifies the impossible, or mystery, or the unquenchable. It's not much of a leap, really; roses are ubiquitous, but due to a genetic barrier, a blue rose is naturally impossible. Of course, there's no particular reason to do what that meddling bully nature wants us to do, so a Japanese company has genetically modified a rose to create...well, it's not quite blue, but it's certainly closer than any previous effort.
Suntory, a Japanese company best known for its alcoholic beverages, has genetically modified a rose to give it an all-over color probably best described as lavender. The problem: roses lack a natural plant pigment known as delphinidin, which gives certain types of flowers, like geraniums and pansies, a blue color. Roses do not naturally have this pigment, but in 2004, Suntory finally managed to introduce a gene for blue pigment from a pansy into a rose. We're no stranger to genetic modification, but this is the first time we've seen a mythical symbol created through the technique.
When I asked Yoshikazu Tanaka of Suntory what the inspiration for the project was, he said "The company wanted us to do something difficult, something nobody had achieved," and what project could be more difficult than an international symbol for impossibility? Of course, the rose really isn't "blue," though it is pretty, so I tried to politely ask if this was the color the team was going for. Mr. Tanaka told me that "every flower has its own way to be blue, with many different pigments. This is our first step: We will keep adding more pigments [to make the flower] more blue."
The rose, which Suntory has named "Applause," is now available in North America at select florists, tailor-made for the next impossible goal you achieve. Suntory's explanation for the name? It serves "as a symbol of congratulations for those whose dreams have come true, as well as of encouragement for those pursuing a dream, whatever it may be." Sniff. Go get 'em, blueish rose!
Maybe its just cuz I'm a guy but it just looks pink to me. Which is slightly closer to red than blue.
yeah... I don't really get what Japanese deal is with colors. Its all messed up over here. They say green lights, which are green, blue. and its not a lost in translation thing. They call them "aka" "kiro" and "ao" which translates to red, yellow, and blue. but they are as green as the lights we have in the USA.
They also have a shade of orange that they call red, but its very orange. You have at least seen pictures of the tori gates like the one "floating" in the water at Hiroshima. Its orange, but they call that color red.
Not really sure why.
Yes, certainly a false claim. As dahiteman states, there is more red than blue (use a colour picker) ... about 20% more. Can you believe that it took them 14 years to make this colour! Then again, it's a beverage company!
@all of the above. They made it quite clear that it wasn't blue in the article, and that is only a step in that direction. Read then write. Always in that order.
Tropic thunder was quite clear about it: "Never go full retard"
I have heard its common to have english taught in Japan. Perhaps you can comment on this inaka_rob. I find it so interest as we share common word, we still end up with the different perceptions of their meaning as in color.
International politics must be a real art to communicate effectively and not offend the listener and to be understood clearly. I am glad you made your earlier points of color inaka_rob. Very cool!
I think if nature prevented a blue rose we should probably leave it alone. Just like nature prevents other traits. We have already seen how rapidly evolution can overcome genetic manipulation of crops. At times i wonder if we are asking the right question. We ask if we can when we really should be asking if we dare.
LOL ... you should practice what you preach. Our comments are not critical of the article but rather Suntory for naming it "Blue" which is far from the truth as the article states. Next time, try to come up with a useful comment and read your last sentence quietly to yourself several times each day.
The company spent 14 years in a quest to create a blue rose and as you can see, they failed miserably but decided to call it "Blue" anyhow which makes it a double fail.
@Far out man. The title of the article clearly states it isn't blue.(Lavender-ish) The article itself goes into detail as to how the rose contains a newly-introduced blue pigment but the rose is not blue as yet.
Then everyone comments that the rose isn't blue.
As I said, Tropic thunder.
You haven't been doing your lessons, have you? I took from the article that the company (obviously not the article writer) considers the rose to be blue. Then I backed up my assumption by going to the source:
... do you have any useful comments???
@ Far Out Man. Pedant.
HarveyD makes great comments in other posts, and can easily defend himself. He doesn't need you.
Far out man, I was going to leave it and allow you to save face, but ok, if you insist:
So to sum up, in your original post, you were in fact, talking about another website written by someone else and elaborating on the claims made there. And you just failed to mention that fact? Woops.
Where I come from that would be construed as somewhat retarded. Doing additional research after my challenge has done nothing but confirm my original opinion.
Firstly, it isn't just another website. It's Suntory's news site. I only went to that site to assure myself that the company was truly making this claim. However no link seemed necessary as the article here in Popsci already implies that Suntory makes the claim and stranger still, the writer even agrees to some extent stating "the first time we've seen a mythical symbol created". The other first posters and myself took exception to this as to us, the rose is not blue enough to call this a success. I had hoped you would instead make a comment on whether you believe that Suntory has accomplished this "mythical creation". I suppose it depends on if you look at the science or at the purely visual end product.
I think the flower is pretty and will sell well!
I think this article is cool. The biologists these days are really coming up with astounding work.
The rose engineered by Suntory is the first rose to ever create it's own blue pigmentation. Therefore, it can safely be termed a "true blue rose."
come on why blue why not glowing and don't mock me yes glowing if they can make bunnies glowing why not roses.