JAU Scientists Gene-editing Cholesterol out of Groundnut Oil

Soon, weight watchers and those with high cholesterol won’t have to think twice before picking up the jar of groundnut oil from supermarkets.

Scientists are all set to help farmers grow groundnut which will be free of cholesterol, the waxy substance most dreaded for clogging arteries.

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Gene Editing Technique Allows Silkworms to Produce Spider Silk

A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in China has succeeded in using a gene editing technique to get silkworms to produce spider silk. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes the technique they used and the quality of the silk produced.

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Will Gene Editing and Other New Breeding Techniques Provide a ‘Second Chance’ for Worldwide Embrace of Genetically Engineered Crops?

Responding to attacks from the anti-GMO movement,” an exasperated geneticist once said to me, “is like trying to stuff a squiggly octopus into a small box; whenever you think you’ve got it contained, you realize there is a tentacle dangling out somewhere.”

That was certainly the case in 2012. For the first time in years, the public debate over genetically engineered (GE) crops had begun to shift in the favor of science and an embrace of the safety of “GMOs” (a term coined by the anti-biotechnology movement to demonize genetic innovation; after all, who would want to eat a ‘modified organism’?!).

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USDA’s Hands-off Approach to Gene-edited Crops Could Revolutionize Research and Development

The US Department of Agriculture’s recent decision to stay out of the business of regulating gene-edited crops could be a game changer for a sector long dominated by a handful of companies armed with massive research and development budgets.

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Can ‘Vaccines’ for Crops Help Cut Pesticide Use and Boost Yields?

When European researchers recently announced a new technique that could potentially replace chemical pesticides with a natural “vaccine” for crops, it sounded too good to be true. Too good partly because agriculture is complicated, and novel technologies that sound brilliant in the laboratory often fail to deliver in the field. And too good because agriculture’s “Green Revolution” faith in fertilizers, fungicides, herbicides, and other agribusiness inputs has proved largely unshakable up to now, regardless of the effects on public health or the environment.

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Australia mulls a green light for gene editing

Gene editing technology – CRISPR is the best-known example – would be freed from government regulation under a proposal by Australia’s Office of Gene Technology Regulator. After a 12-month technical review of the country’s broad definition of genetic modification, regulator Raj Bhula said gene editing is a faster version of classic breeding practices. Read more

Why CRISPR-Edited Food May Be in Supermarkets Sooner Than You Think

In September, the U.S. Department of Agriculture gave the green light to a version of the plant Camelina sativa, an important oilseed crop that had been genetically engineered using CRISPR to produce enhanced omega-3 oil. What was interesting about this approval was that the USDA did not ask that the inventors of the plant endure the usual regulatory hoops required to sell biotech crops. The next month, a drought-tolerant soybean variety developed with CRISPR also got a quick pass from the USDA. Read more