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Nigeria stresses importance of biotechnology for food security

September 27th, 2019 / ISAAA, US

Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology, announced that the Federal Government (FG) of Nigeria is working hard in applying genetic engineering and biotechnology. This is to ensure food safety and security in the country, as it recognizes the importance of both fields in boosting local food production and decreasing the need for continuous …

SATI gene editing could replace CRISPR

September 13th, 2019 / News – Medical, Life Sciences, UK

The ability to edit genes within living cells and organisms at all levels, using tools like the well-known and powerful CRISPR-Cas9, is one of the most sophisticated and useful advances in modern biology. However, the technique has been limited by a myriad of safety concerns.

Now, scientists at the Salk Institute …

Danforth Center tapped to improve sorghum as a bioenergy crop

September 12th, 2019 / USAgnet.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) through its Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER) has launched a major initiative to develop bioenergy crops through genomics-based research. Danforth Center Principal Investigator, Andrea Eveland, Ph.D., will lead a multi-institutional project under this initiative to deepen the understanding of sorghum, a versatile …

A breeding revolution could unleash the potential of potato

September 4th, 2019 / Science Magazine, US

Unlike other major crops, however, the potato has not had a breeding breakthrough of the kind that helped dramatically boost yields during the Green Revolution of the 1950s and 1960s. The reason is that creating a new potato variety is slow and difficult, even by the patient standards of plant …

Patents on plants: Is the sellout of genes a threat to farmers and global food security?

September 3rd, 2019 / DW.com

There’s an ongoing global trend of companies claiming property rights for plants or genetic material of plants  across the globe.

“Resources that used to be available to mankind as a community have now been confined to privatization,” Judith Düesberg from NGO gene ethical network told DW.

The United States first introduced the idea …

Deep-root GMOs could feed world and store carbon

August 20th, 2019 / Inhabitat

Scientists are experimenting with new genetic modification technology that “supercharges” plants to enhance what they already excel at sequestering carbon. As the world scrambles to find innovative mitigation solutions, plants have been doing what they quietly perfected over millions and millions of years ago– taking carbon from the atmosphere and converting it …

How can CRISPR technology improve plant breeding?

July 23rd, 2019 / European Scientist

A new comprehensive review paper published last week on 15 July in Nature plants explores how scientists can use CRISPR to enhance traditional plant breeding techniques with the goal of ensuring global food security (1). Gene-editing technologies like CRISPR will be particularly important “in the context of global climate change as well as in …

Sustainable agriculture is the root of Africa’s economic transformation

April 23rd, 2019 / Relief Web

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) stressed that Africa must transform or modernize its agriculture, primarily to feed itself and reduce dependency on imports for agricultural and food items, while fostering the sector to drive the industrialization process.

Speaking on the topic, “Accelerating Sustainable, Economic Transformation in …

As weeds outsmart the latest weedkillers, farmers are running out of easy options

April 15th, 2019 / The Salt

There was a moment, about 20 years ago, when farmers thought that they’d finally defeated weeds forever.

Biotech companies had given them a new weapon: genetically engineered crops that could tolerate doses of the herbicide glyphosate, also known by its trade name, Roundup. Farmers could spray this chemical right over their …

Hybrid rice seeds yielding hope

April 15th, 2019 / China Daily

Under the scorching sun, fields displaying 31 major hybrid rice varieties grown in Belt and Road countries attracted more than 700 rice experts and businesspeople on Friday to the golden paddy-themed national park in Sanya, Hainan province.

They had gathered on the tropical island in South China to attend the four-day …