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Gene-edited cassava could help millions of farmers

September 24th, 2018 / Alliance for Science, US

Based on the breathless coverage of CRISPR genome editing technology thus far—the famed patent dispute, the overhyped promises of designer babies, the fears of urban biohackers gone mad—you’d be forgiven for thinking that CRISPR is a first-world solution for first-world problems. Indeed, the first CRISPR product to make it out …

An overview of agriculture, nutrition and fortification, supplementation and biofortification

September 24th, 2018 / Agriculture & Food Security

Alan Dubock writes:
The worlds growing population and limited land resources require high intensity of food production. Human nutrition needs both macronutrients and micronutrients. One way of providing micronutrients in staple crops of the poor is biofortification, through plant breeding. All methods of plant breeding are acceptable and safe, and …

GMOs are not agriculture’s future – biotech Is

September 7th, 2018 / Scientific American

… agriculture needs to adapt. The only question is how can we move forward in a way that does not repeat the mistakes of the GMO (genetically modified organism) era? The answer lies in newer technologies that allow us to responsibly develop crops that never integrate non-native elements into a …

Ghana’s anti-GMO farm leader adopts pro-GMO position

September 6th, 2018 / Alliance for Science, US

The former leader of the Peasant Farmers’ Association, Ghana’s primary anti-GMO farmers group, has switched sides to adopt a pro-GMO position.
Mohammed Adams Nasiru attributed his shift to receiving accurate information on agricultural biotechnology from the scientific community.
Nasiru was national president of the Peasant Farmers’ Association of Ghana for almost a …

“Learn from our (South African) biotech example”

September 6th, 2018 / Alliance for Science, US

South Africa is urging other African countries to learn from its latest strategy and adopt more holistic policies around biotechnology.
Ben Durham, chief director in charge of bio-innovation at South Africa’s Department of Science and Technology, said biotechnology adoption works better when it is clearly integrated into various aspects of a …

GMOs: Nigeria making steady progress

September 6th, 2018 / The Guardian, Nigeria

In the last two weeks, the scientific community in Nigeria has been agog with celebration of two main feats that showed genetically modified products have come to stay and that Nigerians are eager and ready to adopt it.It all started with the release of two varieties of Genetically Modified (GM) …

Genes from Dead Sea to produce more drought-tolerant crops

September 5th, 2018 / Israel21c

PlantArcBio aims to make the world’s critical crops able to thrive on less water by adding specific genes found in desert regions. Read …

Breakthrough to combat devastating grape disease

September 4th, 2018 / Technology Networks

A new discovery by Washington State University scientists could help grape growers roll back a devastating virus that withers vines and shrivels harvests.
Named for how it curls the leaves of infected plants, grapevine leafroll disease costs growers millions of dollars in lost vines and productivity. Until now, no one has …

Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) a blessing or a curse?

August 30th, 2018 / Life Science Leader, US

Back in March of this year, a reader of Life Science Leader magazine submitted the above question for our popular monthly Ask The Board column. Started in our February 2011 issue, the column enables readers to submit questions, which are then posed to a member of Life Science Leader’s editorial …

CRISPR-Cas9 used to reduce symptoms of Cassava Brown Streak Disease

August 30th, 2018 / ISAAA

Cassava Brown Streak Disease (CBSD), which is caused by Cassava brown streak virus and Ugandan brown streak virus, interferes with successful cassava propagation in East and Central Africa. The disease is mediated by the interaction of these viruses with the viral genome-linked protein (VPg) and host eukaryotic translation initiation factor …