On May 24, 2018, a few journalists and I visited National Crop Resources Research Institute in Namulonge, located approximately 30 kilometres northeast of Kampala City.
The trip was to assess progress in research that entails developing Genetically Modified (GM) cassava that is resistant to Cassava Brown Streak Disease and Casssava Mosaic Disease – the two diseases ravaging the crop across the country and threatening food security.
Genetic modification in crops or even animals mainly involves adding a specific stretch of DNA into the plant’s genome –a complete set of genetic information in an organism – giving it new or different characteristics.
This could include changing the way the plant grows, or making it resistant to a particular disease. The new DNA becomes part of the GM plant’s genome which the seeds produced by these plants will contain. Read more