Crop Biotech Update weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA).en-usWed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800Climate-smart Rice Helps Farmers Face Climate Change rice varieties can help farmers face the challenges of climate change, according to Matthew Morell, Director General of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). Morell stressed this during his Millenium Lecture at the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation in Chennai, India on February 10, 2017. Furthermore, he labeled rice a...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800GlobalPublic learns about GMOs at ‘Harvest Money' Expo in Uganda Harvest Money Expo is an annual agricultural exhibition organized by the New Vision, a top media house in Uganda. This event remains as one of the biggest agricultural shows in the country since its maiden event in 2010. With the theme "Climate Smart Agriculture", the event was held on February 17-19, 2017. This year's edition of the expo attra...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800AfricaAustralian OGTR Approves Field Trial of GM Potato Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) in Australia has issued a license to the Queensland University of Technology, allowing the limited and controlled release (field trial) of potato genetically modified (GM) for disease resistance. The field trial (License Application DIR 150) is authorized to take place at one site of up to 0.1 hect...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800Asia and the PacificDownregulation of BnDA1 Improves Seed Weight and Organ Size in Oilseed Rape rape (Brassica napus L.) is an important oil crop and also a raw material for biofuel. Seed weight and seed size are the main contributors to its seed yield, which directly affect its oil yield. The gene DA1 is known to negatively regulate seed size and downregulation of the DA1 gene in Arabidopsis (AtDA1) leads to larger seeds and organs. ...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800ResearchOverexpression of Wheat Gene TaOEP16-2-5B Enhances Heat and Drought Tolerance in Arabidopsis stresses, such as heat and drought, are major factors affecting crop productivity. In a previous study, a plastid outer envelope protein gene from wheat (Triticum aestivum), TaOEP16-2, was identified. Xinshan Zang and a team of researchers from China Agricultural University aimed to isolate and characterize the TaOEP16-2 gene.Three sequence...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800ResearchDevelopment of Targeted Mutant Rice using the CRISPR-Cpf1 System is a newly identified CRISPR-Cas system, and Cpf1 was recently used as a tool for targeted genome editing in mammalian cells. To test whether the engineered CRISPR-Cpf1 system could induce the production of rice mutants, Rongfang Xu, together with colleagues from Anhui Academy of Agricultural Sciences, selected two genome targets, the O...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800New Breeding TechnologiesUSPTO Releases Verdict on CRISPR Patent U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) released its decision on the issue of intellectual property rights to the gene-editing technique, CRISPR-Cas9. USPTO ruled that the Broad Institute of Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge could keep their patents on using the technique in eukaryotic cells. This means that Un...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800New Breeding TechnologiesFat Content in Soybean Oil Modified with CRISPR-Cpf1 research team from the Center for Genome Engineering, within the Institute for Basic Research (IBS) in South Korea has successfully edited two genes that contribute to the fat content of soybean oil using the new CRISPR-Cpf1 technology. This technology is an alternative to the more widely used gene editing tool CRISPR-Cas9.IBS scientists have pre...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800New Breeding TechnologiesPenicillin Production in Penicillium chrysogenum is not Dependent on the Number of Synthesis Genes gene integration into microbial genomes is a conventional way to gain improved gene expression. For Penicillium chrysogenum, the fungal producer of the antibiotic penicillin, several producing strains carry multiple copies of the penicillin synthesis gene cluster. This led to the generally accepted view that high penicillin concentration...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800Beyond Crop BiotechThe GMO MOOC is Back! you curious about GMOs? Do you wish you knew more about the technology, and associated issues, so you could respond to questions and criticisms? Have you been seeking a source of credible information on agricultural biotechnology? Then register now and take advantage of the relaunch of "Science and Politics of the GMO," Cornell University's new...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800AnnouncementsMSU Training Program on IPR and Technology Commercialization Michigan State University (MSU) World Technology Access Program (WorldTAP) invites applications to its training program, "Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property Management, Technology Commercialization, and Product Stewardship" which will run from August 20 to September 1, 2017 in East Lansing, Michigan. The training program is designed to ...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800AnnouncementsIPBO-VIB-UGent Course "Modern Breeding Techniques of Maize" Institute of Plant Biotechnology Outreach (IPBO) in collaboration with VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology, and with the support of VLIR-UOS invites application for the course "Modern Breeding Techniques of Maize." The course will be conducted August 21 to September 8, 2017 in Gent, Belgium. The program will start with fundamental backgr...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800AnnouncementsNew ISAAA Board Game: #BiotechisCool releases its first printable board game on biotechnology! The new material is called #BiotechisCool, which highlights the fun facts on crop biotechnology such as the wonder bacterium and gene gun used for modifying crops and what farmers say about planting biotech crops. The material comes with a board game which allows the players to underst...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800Document RemindersNew Communication Materials from Cornell Alliance for Science Cornell Alliance for Science has recently released two communication materials. The blog article "Drought-tolerant Maize Shows Promise in Tanzania," written by Mark Lynas, tells the story of Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) project, and the country's first ever genetically modified crop. Read the article at the Alliance for Science websi...Wed, 22 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0800Document Reminders