Photosynthesis and Chloroplasts
You will read that only plants, algae, and some bacteria are photosynthetic. There is an exception to this, however. One species of sea slug has found a way to steal chloroplasts, store them in glands lining its digestive tract, and live on the sugar that is produced (Milius, 2010). The sea slug has even commandeered the genes to help repair these chloroplasts to keep them working for 9 months—longer than the algae would (Fang, 2015)!
What if animals and humans could be engineered to have chloroplasts and could then use photosynthesis?
Focus your discussion on ONE of the following topics:
Describe at least 2 benefits and 2 drawbacks there might be for animal cells (including humans) to make their own food through photosynthesis.
Explain which cells, tissues, or organs should be modified to lead to successful photosynthesis in animals or humans. Discuss how these compare to a plant’s leaves.
Describe the process of photosynthesis to explain at least 1 requirement for photosynthesis that would need to be considered for chloroplasts to function in an animal or a human.
Review the following links for materials to enhance your knowledge and assist with your discussion post:
Chloroplast-Stealing Sea Slug
Sea Slug Steals Photosynthesis Genes from Algae
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