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Quantum Dot Fishfood

Any Fish can be a GloFish!!
  (+8, -1)
(+8, -1)
  [vote for,

Point 1: Quantum dots are ludicrously fluorescent, and are almost ideal fluorophores. The absorb light over a wide spectrum, and can be 'tuned' to emit light at any wavelength (as long as it's longer than the excitation wavelength, obviously). They're also fairly non-toxic (or can be rendered inert with a coating), don't degrade, and don't photobleach.

Point 2: Many aquarium fish are largely transparent, as are most shrimps, some anemones and other creatures.

Point C: Many fish will eat almost anything.

So. Make fish-food which contains quantum dots. Fish eat food. Fish become fluorescent. Most of the fluorescence will probably be confined to the gut, and will pass out with the droppings. However, it's quite likely that the q-dots will be taken up by the intestinal epithelium (they're about the size of a small protein molecule), and they may even be transported to other locations in the body.

If your fish have different eating habits, you have the option to label different fish with distinct colours.

Yes, I know that genetically modified fluorescent zebrafish are a more permanent solution to your fluorescent fish cravings. However, you can't buy a fluorescent knife-fish or a dayglo prawn. But now you can make one!

GloFu (tm) is available from MaxCo. Happy Fish Food, Inc.

MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 13 2007

Quantum dots http://www.evidenttech.com/
[MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 13 2007]

Fluorescent zebrafish http://www.glofish.com/
Made the boring way. [MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 13 2007]


       glo baby glo +
xenzag, Dec 14 2007

       Why do your points go 1, 2, C?   

       Lovely idea - I especially like the whole "label different fish with different colours" thing.
dbmag9, Dec 15 2007

       By goodness, I've been looking for a tunable fluorophore. Thanks!
BunsenHoneydew, Dec 16 2007

       Feed an electric eel on EL particles .... ?
8th of 7, Dec 16 2007

       //By goodness, I've been looking for a tunable fluorophore.// You have? Intrigued. Incidentally, they can be "tuned" at the time of manufacture, but not subsequently. They're basically nanocrystals which behave a single unit, and their emission wavelength depends on the number of atoms in the nanocrystal.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 16 2007

       //Incidentally, they can be "tuned" at the time of manufacture...//   

       umm... so you could make a quantum dot "mirror" that took broad-spectrum sunlight and reflected all of it's energy as, say... chlorophyll absorption spectra (blue/red/IR) ?
FlyingToaster, Dec 16 2007

       Hmmm. Probably not quite, but sort of. Suppose you want to emit at 700nm (I have no idea - this is just a guess). You could make a solution of qDots (or coat a surface with them) which would absorb all components of sunlight at longer wavelengths, and re-emit it as 700nm fluorescence. I'm not sure what the energy efficiency would be, but the quantum yield for qdots is pretty high.   

       You can't use this to convert longer wavelengths to shorter, though.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 16 2007

       An alternative would be to make little glass bulbs filled with qDots; these are attached to thin titanium needles or hooks. The fish is then pierced in aesthetically pleasing yet physically undamaging areas. This would allow your investment of qDots (and they are not cheap) to be retained for longer, and it would allow your fish to be fashionably hip.
mylodon, Dec 17 2007

       Yep,they cloned cats that glow red when exposed to ultraviolet rays.I wish they could do this with dog shit, it would prevent me from stepping in it on these dark gloomy mornings. At least when dog poop was white you could see it.   

       (as you were)
skinflaps, Dec 17 2007

       Perhaps these could be fused with different protiens and such, so tha they are taken throughout the body, possibly even to specific parts for multicolor fish.
apocalyps956, Dec 17 2007

       //Perhaps these could be fused with different proteins and such// Not so simple. If you make Qdot-labelled proteins and feed them to the fish, the protein component will be digested before it gets very far. You might be able to couple the dots to some kind of small molecule which would be targeted tissue-specifically, but I'm not sure this would work. If you want multicolour fish, you're better off creating a GM fish with different forms of GFP (a naturally fluoresecent protein - now available in different colours) spliced in the the genes for various tissue-specific endogenous proteins.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 17 2007

       Goldfish: "What about EMS recombination ?"   

       Maxwell: "We've already tried it. Ethyl methane sulfonate as an alkylating agent, a potent mutagen - It created a virus so lethal the subject was dead before he left the tank."   

       Goldfish: "Then a repressive protein that blocks the operating cells ?"   

       Maxwell: "Wouldn't obstruct replication, but it does give rise to an error in replication, so that the newly formed DNA strand carries the mutation and you've got a virus again. But, uh, this-- all of this is academic. You were made as well as we could make you ...."   

       Goldfish: "But not to last. "   

       Maxwell: "The fish that shines twice as bright shines half as long. And you have shone so very very brightly .........."   

       <Goldfish crushes Maxwell's skull>
8th of 7, Dec 17 2007

       Maxwell: "...and I have given you the power to speak!"   

       Goldfish: "Yes but....what were we talking about? My memory...tsk!"
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 17 2007


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