Alfalfa Spliced with Vitamin D
TEMPE, Ariz.--A three-year, $300,000 grant from the Wallace Foundation is allowing researchers at Arizona State University to attempt to splice genetic information for human vitamin D binding protein into an alfalfa plant. Research on the protein has shown that along with its multiple roles in nutrition and bone strengthening, it may also play an important role in activating the body's natural defenses against disease.
Using the protein as a treatment for ailing patients, it could potentially help invigorate and activate the body's fight against tumors or infectious agents. The alfalfa will be grown hydroponically to make and secrete the vitamin D binding protein from its roots, to be harvested and purified for human use. For additional information, visit www.asu.edu.