Carbon nanodots (CDs) are carbon-based nano spheres that have been found to occur naturally, in events such as forest fires, and in produce, such as instant coffee. Our team modified CDs to attach various genetic material, including DNA and RNA, which is an innovation able to overcome several of the current issues within the agricultural industry, including sustainable and cheap biopesticides, herbicides and is a new method in the field of genetic engineering. CDs are cheap, fast and easy to produce and apply on multiple species of plant, from large production scale crops to high-value species.
Our technology aims to increase crop yields while allowing the engineering of plants to cope in our changing climate. It will create a more eco-friendly way to control pests and encourage desirable traits, while saving money lost via plant waste from disease and the effects of drought or flooding. CDs are versatile, allowing for the need of specific treatments present in individual plant species, and could boost production output significantly.
Carbon nanodot chemical schematic.
Carbon nanodots in Triticum aestivum (wheat) leaves.