Advertisers and marketers are always looking for the next ad space. Will the next media space be on butterfly wings?
A glowing green logo drawn by scientists on the wing of a genetically altered butterfly could herald the day that the insects are adorned with adverts and slogans.
A team at the University at Buffalo that developed the world's first GM butterfly has now adapted the work to create the fluorescent marking on the wings of the insect to demonstrate an innovative tool that will make it easier to find out what genes do, in this case those that play a role in making the patterns on wings, from stripes to eye spots.
The researchers demonstrated their method by using a laser to stencil the silhouette of a butterfly upon the surface of a butterfly's wing.
The butterflies were otherwise unaffected by the laser, which could activate specially implanted fluorescent genes, according to the study published yesterday in the journal BMC Developmental Biology by a team in America and Germany.