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USDA AND FDA COMMIT TO WORK TOGETHER TO ENSURE FOOD SAFETY

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which are in charge of enforcing the country's food safety laws, agreed to enhance their cooperation and coordination, review biotech regulations, and apply a new system for farm safety inspections.   According to their formal agreement, USDA and FDA share jurisdiction over food products in...

BANGLADESHI PROFESSIONALS SHOW POSITIVE ATTITUDE ON BIOTECH PRODUCTS

Professionals from public and private sectors in Bangladesh have a favorable attitude towards biotechnology, according to a survey conducted by researchers from Rahman Agricultural University and Patuakhali Science and Technology University. The results are published in Agriculture and Food Security journal.   Bangladesh is one of the highly potential countries for marketing biotechnological products, thus, the attitude and consumption...

PLAGUE-RESISTANT TOMATOES DEVELOPED THROUGH GENETIC ENGINEERING

A study conducted by researchers at the Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Institute (IBMCP), a joint venture of the Universitat Politècnica de València and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), reveals how genetically modified tomato plants have increased resistance towards Tuta absoluta insect plagues.   An estimated 40% of the worldwide annual crop production is lost to plagues...

VVIAGL11 GENE REGULATES SEED MORPHOGENESIS IN GRAPEVINE

Seedlessness in grapes is one of its desirable traits. In a previous study, VviAGL11 was found to be the main gene responsible for seed morphogenesis in grapevine. Jaiana Malabarba from Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil aimed to further study the function of this gene in grapevine.   The team developed two sets of...

HUNGER IN CONFLICT AREAS CONTINUES TO ESCALATE

Food shortage in conflict-stricken areas continues to rise, implying greater need for food and livelihood assistance, according to the January 2018 report of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and World Food Programme for the United Nations Security Council.   The report includes status of food insecurity in 16 countries: Afghanistan, Burundi, the Central African Republic,...

NAMIBIA LAUNCHES FIRST GM DETECTION LAB

A laboratory for testing food and genetically modified products was opened in Namibia for the first time. The laboratory, designed by the National Commission on Research, Science and Technology, was presented by higher education minister, Itah Kandjii-Murangi in Windhoek.   According to Kandjii-Murangi, the laboratory will be vital in ensuring that only the GM products approved for...

ARCTIC® FUJI APPLE GETS CANADIAN APPROVAL

Arctic® Fuji, Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc.'s (OSF) third nonbrowning Arctic® apple variety has been approved by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Health Canada (HC).   The CFIA and HC have announced that the Arctic® Fuji variety "did not pose a greater risk to human health than apples currently available on the Canadian market. Health Canada also...

"WILD" GENES OPEN UP OPPORTUNITIES FOR BETTER RICE VARIETIES

The genomes of seven wild rice varieties have been completed, according to the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). Published in Nature Genetics, the study details the generation of seven wild and two cultivated genomes (IR8 and N22). IR8, more popularly known as "miracle rice," was developed by IRRI scientists and was one of the rice varieties...

UZH SCIENTISTS DEVELOP WHEAT LINES RESISTANT TO POWDERY MILDEW

Scientists from the University of Zurich (UZH) developed new wheat lines with enhanced resistance against fungal disease. The results are published in Theoretical and Applied Genetics.   UZH researchers have been investigating a wheat gene that confers resistance to powdery mildew. The gene, known as Pm3, exists in different variations. However, using a single Pm3 gene to confer...

RESEARCHERS IDENTIFY PLUM POX VIRUS SUSCEPTIBILITY GENES IN APRICOT

Plum pox virus (PPV), which causes Sharka disease, is one of the main limiting factors for apricot production. In apricot (Prunus armeniaca L.), the major PPV resistance locus (PPVres) has been mapped to the upper part of linkage group 1. Elena Zuriaga and her colleagues from Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Agrarias in Spain predicted that meprin...

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