A handful of genes in a morphine free poppy could hold the key to producing improved pain management pharmaceuticals. Norman, the no-morphine poppy, is superior to morphine producing poppies as it produces thebaine and oripavine – compounds preferred by industry in the manufacture of alternative high value pain-killers.
CSIROs Dr Phil Larkin, and The Australian National Universitys Anthony Millgate and Dr Barry Pogson have been working with Tasmanian Alkaloids to investigate Norman the morphine-free poppy. "The genes we found behaved differently in Norman compared to standard morphine producing poppies and were consistently associated with the blockage in morphine synthesis and with the accumulation of thebaine and oripavine," Dr Larkin says.
Sophie Clayton | EurekAlert!
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