Plant Scientists See Big Potential in Tiny Plastids

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Science  11 Jan 2002:
Vol. 295, Issue 5553, pp. 258-259
DOI: 10.1126/science.295.5553.258

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When it comes to genetic engineering, the genes inside the nucleus get all the attention. But plants have an unassuming second genome inside tiny organelles called plastids. And although this small, circular genome carries far fewer genes than its nuclear counterpart, researchers say its potential for genetic engineering far outstrips its size; tinkering with the plastid genome could boost photosynthesis or turn plants into drug factories.