The effects of caffeine on Salvia Morada

Essay by SuespxCollege, UndergraduateB, December 2006

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Idea: To treat the purple sage with different caffeine solutions over a period of 4 weeks . One plant was grown healthy and unexposed; this was the control plant. One plant was grown in a solution containing caffeine tablets, one with the energy drink Red Bull and the other with coffee. Dosages and/or water solutions depended upon potency of the product. One caffeine tablet contains 200 mg of a caffeine, the average cup of coffee contains 70mg of caffeine and an 8oz can of Red Bull contains 80mg of caffeine.

Once the plants where treated, tissue samples where taken and observed under microscope. DNA samples where isolated using PCR methods and gel electrophoresis was performed in order to observe banding differences with the control plant. This was in hopes of revealing a genetic affect of caffeine on the plant.


In observing the tissue samples, I believed that there would be a difference in color and shape of the mesophyll, when compared to the controlled sample.

I believed this will be due to the dehydrating effects of caffeine, creating a lack of stroma or chlorophyll, thus affecting photosynthesis an in turn, affecting color. I also believe the sample with the energy drink will be healthiest among the exposed sample due to its sugar content.

I predicted that the banding results would reveal a difference in banding with the control sample, indicating genetic effect. I also believe this difference would be less prominent in the coffee sample.

Method & Materials

Plants where treated daily with an 8oz solution. Plant A's solution contained a crushed 200mg tablet dissolved in 8oz of water. Plant B's solution contained 2oz Red Bull and 6oz water. Plant C's solution contained one tablespoon of instant coffee in 8 oz of water.

Growth rate and color where...