Nocturnal battle

Monday, June 1, 2009

If pot grew on trees...

Shawn sent this over.  Apparently at least ten years old.  A kid gets busted for possession in Florida and his chemistry professor father goes to work. Figures out how to splice thc onto oranges. Wonder how hard the technology really is?

Snopes debunked this story in 2001, it was originally created by a website called South to the future.  But still, a fellow can dream...

“It’s quite simple, really,” Nanofsky explains, “I wanted to combine Citrus sinesis with Delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol.” In layman’s terms, the respected college professor proposed to grow oranges that would contain THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. Fourteen years later, that project is complete, and Nanofsky has succeeded where his letter writing campaign of yore failed: he has the undivided attention of the nation’s top drug enforcement agencies, political figures, and media outlets. The turning point in the Nanofsky saga came when the straight-laced professor posted a message to Internet newsgroups announcing that he was offering “cannabis-equivalent orange tree seeds” at no cost via the U.S. mail. Several weeks later, U.S. Justice Department officials showed up at the mailing address used in the Internet announcement: a tiny office on the second floor of the Dittmer Laboratory of Chemistry building on the FSU campus. There they would wait for another 40 minutes before Prof. Nanofsky finished delivering a lecture to graduate students on his recent research into the “cis-trans photoisomerization of olefins.”
“I knew it was only a matter of time before someone sent me more than just a self-addressed stamped envelope,” Nanofsky quips, “but I was surprised to see Janet Reno’s special assistant at my door.” After a series of closed door discussions, Nanofsky agreed to cease distribution of the THC-orange seeds until the legal status of the possibly narcotic plant species is established.
Much to the chagrin of authorities, the effort to regulate Nanofsky’s invention may be too little too late. Several hundred packets containing 40 to 50 seeds each have already been sent to those who’ve requested them, and Nanofsky is not obliged to produce his mailing records. Under current law, no crime has been committed and it is unlikely that charges will be brought against the fruit’s inventor.
Now it is federal authorities who must confront the nation’s unwieldy body of inconsistent drug laws. According to a source at the Drug Enforcement Agency, it may be months if not years before all the issues involved are sorted out, leaving a gaping hole in 
U.S. drug policy in the meantime. At the heart of the confusion is the fact that THC now naturally occurs in a new species of citrus fruit.
As policy analysts and hemp advocates alike have been quick to point out, the apparent legality (for now) of Nanofsky’s “pot orange” may render debates over the legalization of marijuana moot. In fact, 
Florida’s top law enforcement officials admit that even if the cultivation of Nanofsky’s orange were to be outlawed, it would be exceedingly difficult to identify the presence of outlawed fruit among the state’s largest agricultural crop.
Amidst all of the hubbub surrounding his father’s experiment, Irwin Nanofsky exudes calm indifference. Now 30-years-old and a successful environmental photographer, the younger Nanofsky can’t understand what all of the fuss is about. “My dad’s a chemist. He makes polymers. I doubt it ever crossed his mind that as a result of his work tomorrow’s kids will be able to get high off of half an orange.”

Biochem 101: How to design a Cannabis-equivalent citrus plant

Step One:
Biochemically isolate all the required enzymes for the production of THC.
Step Two:
Perform N-terminal sequencing on isolated enzymes, design degenerate PCR (polymerase chain reaction) primers and amplify the genes.
Step Three:
Clone genes into an agrobacterial vector by introducing the desired piece of DNA into a plasmid containing a transfer or T-DNA. The mixture is transformed into Agrobacterium tumefaciens, a gram negative bacterium.
Step Four:
Use the Agrobacterium tumefaciens to infect citrus plants after wounding. The transfer DNA will proceed to host cells by a mechanism similar to conjugation. The DNA is randomly integrated into the host genome and will be inherited.

This technology could really help the sagging Fallbrook citrus industry. A link to another article here.  Takes care of scurvy as well. And no more problems getting the kids to finish their juice.


Anonymous said...

The FLIP SIDE is being ignored. THE LARGEST CASH CROP OF CITRUS CAN NOW BE SAID TO BE LACED WITH THC!!! You can't disprove it. Every glass of OJ from Minute Maid (Coca Cola), Tropicana, Simply Orange, yadda yadda, COULD HAVE THC in there product!! The ramifications are ramificationable in the extremis.

Ciao, Babe.

Anonymous said...

Now I know why Anita Bryant looked so happy.

shawnintland said...

Don't suppose we know anybody among those "several hundred" who received seed, do we?

shawnintland said...

"This gives new meaning to the idea of getting "juiced"...and finally, something that also relieves cottonmouth! Well, like many great stories, this one turns out to be a fake too! The giveaway... The Ford Aerostar was not available until 1986! Supposedly this all started in '84.

another version of the story; http://naturalplane.blogspot.com/2009/01/biochemist-creates-oranges-containing.html]

Anonymous said...

Another one of your stupid dopehead stories. Imagine if some jerk actually could turn orange juice into drugs, it would be another 911 and cost the taxpayers billions of dollars to eradicate. But you and your hippie friends in your doped up stupor would think it was funny (I mean "groovy") Grass is illegal for a good reason-it intoxicates and impairs judgement. If you feel the need to have a drink to get high, go to your neighborhood liquor store or local bar, it has legal orange juice drinks to enjoy like screwdrivers or Tequila Sunrise's.

shawnintland said...

Hee hee hee, Just love it when some uptight conservative gets bent out of shape over pot but then goes on to promote getting sauced on alcohol! Oh yeah, it's legal, so that must make it ok!

You say "Grass is illegal for a good reason-it intoxicates and impairs judgement." So booze doesn't? I have lost quite a number of friends due to drunken drivers...can't say any of my friends have died due to a stoner at the wheel!

I don't enjoy alcohol, but that doesn't mean I'm out to stop you or anyone else from drinking yourselves into liver failure! Lighten up. Better yet, fire one up and see if you don't agree that it beats the hell out of a drunken stupor.

Blue Heron said...