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Secrets of Arabica coffee and a salty attack on British tea

Scientists from the University of Udine have created the most complete genetic map of Arabica coffee to date and discovered its genetic secrets, enabling the composition of more aromatic infusions. The acquired knowledge allows us to reach genes essential in coffee production, e.g., for the sweet and mild taste. The study will also help grow coffee trees to cope with climate change better. The Italian team used sequencing technology that allows reading DNA strands up to hundreds of thousands of base pairs long without interference and with greater accuracy.

Using data from almost 14,000 people aged 30 to 79, scientists from Sichuan University examined the effect of tea consumption on longevity. According to the Chinese, drinking three cups of tea a day may have anti-ageing effects – tea consumption was associated with slower biological ageing, especially in the case of people who regularly drank tea in moderate amounts. Tea is rich in polyphenols and antioxidants that reduce inflammation and remove toxic byproducts of cellular reactions.

According to professor Michelle Francl from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, add a pinch of salt to the cup to get the best taste of tea. It blocks the receptor that gives tea a bitter taste. That research-backed proposal caused a stir in the UK and prompted an official, if tongue-in-cheek, response from the US embassy. “Adding salt to Britain’s national drink is not official US policy. And it never will be,” the embassy announced on Platform X.

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