Snippets of Science: Glowing Pumpkin Seeds (pepitas) and Protochlorophyllide

Pepitas, the inside of pumpkin seeds, fluoresce under UV light! It is a stunning coral orange color. This photo doesn’t quite do it justice. The compound causing the fluorescence is protochlorophillide, a precursor to chlorophyll. (Chlorophyll is also fluorescent under UV light, but it glows a deep red.) The seeds themselves have a slight glow [...]