First-ever Genetically-modified Silkworm Awaits Nod from GEAC

A joint effort by sericulture research institute and Hyderabad-based lab

World’s first-ever genetically modified silkworm developed at Andhra Pradesh State Sericulture Research and Development Institute (APSSRDI) now awaits approval from Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee at national level to go for the second phase trials of the baculovirus resistant transgenic silkworm with a view to overcoming the loss in silk cocoon production.

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Lab-grown Meat Finds Its Way Into Chinese Moon Cakes

Chinese customers who are fed up with traditional flavors of moon cakes such as mixed nuts and bean paste now have a new choice: synthetic meat. It is a Chinese tradition to eat moon cakes over Mid-Autumn Festival, which falls on Friday this year. A week before the festival, moon cakes stuffed with mock meat made from plant protein went on sale on e-commerce platform Taobao. In less than three days, over half of the limited 3,000 boxes had been sold.

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Agriculture Panel Mulls Use of Genetically Modified Oilseeds in Maharashtra

The high-powered committee on transformation in agriculture – constituted by Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi and comprising nine states – is in favour of using genetically-modified (GM) crops for oilseeds to reduce the country’s dependence on imports.

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Scientists’ Work on Microbes may Boost Farming Research

National University of Singapore (NUS) scientists have developed a faster and cheaper way to create genetic material used in the research of disruptive agriculture. The technology accelerates the tedious process labs go through to genetically modify their own micro-organisms for research.

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Accelerating Growth: IAEA Launches Plant Mutation Breeding Network for Asia and the Pacific

With populations growing rapidly, particularly in Asia and the Pacific, farmers and scientists are all the more drawing on the benefits of using irradiation to develop new crop varieties and meet farmers’ needs: higher, stable yields and high-quality plants that can resist disease and climate change.

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Scientists Crack the Code to Improve Stress Tolerance in Plants

Scientists Crack the Code to Improve Stress Tolerance in Plants

In any eukaryotic organism, the DNA in a cell exists not as a loose strand, but as a highly condensed complex that consists of DNA and other proteins known as histones. Overall, this condensed structure is referred to as chromatin, and this packaging is important for maintaining the integrity of DNA structure and sequence. However, as chromatin restricts the topology of DNA, modification of chromatin (via modification of histones) is an important form of regulation of genes and is referred to as epigenetic regulation.

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With its CRISPR Revolution, China Becomes a World Leader in Genome Editing

With its CRISPR Revolution, China Becomes a World Leader in Genome Editing

Editing of plant, animal, and human genomes has never been easier, as this country’s scientists are rapidly demonstrating.

For many people, CRISPR plus China equals the biophysicist He Jiankui, who infamously used the genome editor last year to alter the DNA of two human embryos that would become twin girls. Before his announcement, He was little-known within the country’s CRISPR community, which has grown rapidly and is now challenging—and by some measures surpassing—the United States in its use of the powerful tool.

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We Dislike GM Foods Because We’re Ignorant About Them

Protesters of the recent application of a confined  genetically modified (GM)  rice field trial at the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (Mardi) Arau station in Tambun Tulang, Perlis, claimed that GM rice threatens Malaysia as a centre of genetic diversity for rice.

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Microbial Manufacturing: Genetic Engineering Breakthrough for Urban Farming

Researchers at SMART, MIT’s research enterprise in Singapore, and National University of Singapore (NUS) have developed a technology that greatly accelerates the genetic engineering of microbes that can be used to manufacture chemicals used for urban farming. The new technology will result in a faster, cheaper, more accurate, and near-scarless plasmid construction, using standard and reusable parts, compatible with most popular DNA assembly methods.

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Legacy Monsanto, Cagayan PLGU hold agri-related seminars

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan, July 22 (PIA)–Legacy Monsanto Philippines recently partnered with the Cagayan Provincial Learning and Resource Center (CPLRC) under the Office of Governor Manuel Mamba for the conduct of an agricultural biotech seminar for farmers and an agri-counselling seminar for senior high school students. Read more

Researchers Can Finally Modify Plant Mitochondrial DNA

Researchers in Japan have edited plant mitochondrial DNA for the first time, which could lead to a more secure food supply. Nuclear DNA was first edited in the early 1970s, chloroplast DNA was first edited in 1988, and animal mitochondrial DNA was edited in 2008. However, no tool previously successfully edited plant mitochondrial DNA.

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Singapore’s First Seed Bank Launched at Botanic Gardens to Promote Plant Conservation

Much has been said about endangered animal species, but Singapore is now also doing its part for threatened plant species in South-east Asia with the opening of the country’s first seed bank.

The bank – where seeds are stored and conserved – is located at the Botanic Gardens and was launched by the National Parks Board (NParks) on Saturday (July 13). The plan is to use the seeds for habitat restoration and species conservation projects in Singapore and the region.

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