Scientists have created the world’s first tomatoes genetically engineered to contain extra antioxidants.
In a breakthrough for the field of genetic engineering, and potentially anti-aging, researchers at the University of Hong Kong discovered a method of fortifying tomatoes with—deep breath—vitamin E, provitamin A, lycopene, phytosterols, and squalene.
A trio of Chinese researchers isolated a gene normally found in Brassica juncea (Indian mustard) and successfully modified it for introduction into tomatoes. Regular old tomatoes are already a good source of antioxidants like vitamin E and lycopene, a compound that’s good for everything from your heart to your skin.
But the new and improved ones now contain nearly 500 percent more vitamin E than their unenhanced counterparts; lycopene was boosted by more than 100 percent, too.