Aresa Biodetection

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Aresa Biodetection was a biotechnology firm based in Copenhagen, Denmark which is best known for genetically modifying a common weed to indicate the presence of land mines. The company created a thale cress whose leaves turn brown in the presence of nitrogen dioxide, a compound which is leached into the soil by unexploded land mines.[1][2][3] Previously identification of land mines was done by probing or by metal detectors. Use of these plants as indicators significantly reduces the risks to humans and animals who have previously probed the soil to locate mines and finds mines in plastic housings that cannot be found with metal detectors.[4]

In 2008 Aresa Biodetection announced it had stopped further development of genetically engineered thale cress.[5] In 2009, Aresa Biodetection had no sales and only one employee.[6]


  1. ^ Halper, Mark (Dec 3, 2006). "Saving Lives And Limbs With a Weed". Time. Archived from the original on December 5, 2007. Retrieved 26 February 2010.
  2. ^ "Biotech to help clear the curse of landmines". The Hindu. Apr 7, 2005. Archived from the original on April 8, 2005. Retrieved 26 February 2010.
  3. ^ "Notification Number: B/DK/06/01". EU Joint Research Centre. Retrieved 11 September 2012.
  4. ^ "New weed may flag land mines". Christian Science Monitor. February 19, 2004. Retrieved 26 February 2010.
  5. ^ Staff Use of Plants for landmine detection Greatcore inc., Comparison of Landmine Detection Methods, Retrieved 11 September 2012
  6. ^ Aresa Biodetection ApS Largest Companies - top 100,000 in the Nordic countries, Retrieved 11 September 2012