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, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800A Comprehensive Review of the Environmental Safety of Bt Crops Now Published comprehensive review authored by scientists from Switzerland and the United States summarized the existing literature on Bt crops from laboratory and field-based studies. The authors, Jörg Romeis, Steven E. Naranjo, Michael Meissle, and Anthony M. Shelton highlight the contribution of Bt crops to conservation biological control. The paper publish...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800AmericasNew Chocolate has Its Own Pro-GMO Label to Promote GMO Farming brand Ethos Chocolate has a line-up of irresistible chocolates that proudly bears a pro-GMO label. The brand boasts of its new label and aims to promote GMO farming as a sustainable solution to save the cacao tree, which scientists predict will be extinct as early as 2030 due to climate change and plant disease.Ethos Chocolate is pro...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800AmericasNASA: Tree Planting and Agri in China and India Make Earth Greener Earth is now greener than it was two decades ago, according to the satellites of US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Data from NASA satellites revealed that China and India are the leading countries in terms of increased greening on lands. This is attributed to the ambitious tree planting programs in China and intensive agr...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800Asia and the PacificExperts Call for Urgent Political Support for Agri-biotech in the Philippines by the Coalition for Agriculture Modernization in the Philippines, Inc. (CAMP), SEARCA Biotechnology Information Center's (SEARCA BIC) second policy brief highlights the urgent need for a strong political support for biotechnology and biotech crops as well as streamlined biosafety regulations in the Philippines. The CAMP is a non-governmen...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800Asia and the PacificGenes that Resist White Rust Pathogen Found belonging to the Brassicaceae family such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, mustard, and Brussels sprout may have different tastes, but they have a common enemy: white rust. One kind of white rust, caused by the pathogen Albugo candida threatens cabbages. Though not actually a fungus, A. candida acts like one and spreads under the right con...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800EuropeStudy Finds Attitudes of the Youth toward GM Food Affected by Family Members study found that young adults' attitudes towards GMO food was influenced by their referent individual, their location, and their gender. Published by PLOS One, the study by Stephen Brosig and Miroslava Bavarova had respondents from the Czech Republic, Ukraine, and Russia.Results showed that there is a positive association between the GM food atti...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800EuropeRothamsted Research Applies for New Trials of GM Camelina Research has sought permission from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) to run a series of trials using genetically modified (GM) Camelina plants.The application is for a five-year project, ending in 2023, with plants being sown in April, and harvested in September and follows previous GM Camelina trials carried ou...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800EuropeCOGEM: No Risk in Import and Processing of GM Maize Bt11 Netherlands Commission on Genetic Modification (COGEM) was asked to comment on the renewal of the license for import and processing GM maize event, Bt11. Bt11 was approved for import in 1998, which was renewed in 2010 and allowed for a period of 10 years. COGEM released positive comments on both applications.The current application for renewal ...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800EuropeScientists Report First Genetic Transformation of Einkorn from All-Russia Research Institute of Agricultural Biotechnology in Moscow reported the first genetically modified einkorn produced. Domesticated einkorn (Triticum monococcum) is one of the oldest cultivated cereal crops globally, and its genetic characteristics (small genome size, low ploidy, high genetic polymorphism) make it a good mo...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800ResearchHaplotype Analysis of Rice Genes Helps Development of Tailor-made Rice with Improved Genetic Gains rice genes involved in the expression of major traits have been reported, however, their superior haplotype combinations for development of ideal variety remains elusive. Thus, Ragavendran Abbai and colleagues at the International Rice Research Institute conducted haplotype analysis of 120 previously characterized genes governing grain yield a...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800ResearchGMOs Not the Cause of Monarch Butterfly Decline, Study butterflies and their principal host plant, the milkweed, have been declining in abundance even before GM crops were planted. This was the result of an extensive study conducted by Jack Boyle, a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow of Environmental Science and Policy at College of William and Mary. Boyle and team's study is published in the Proceedin...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800ResearchCRISPR-Cas9 Used for Targeted Disruption of FAD2–2 Microsomal Omega-6 Desaturase in Soybean CRISPR-Cas9 system has been regarded as a useful tool in site-directed mutagenesis because of its wide applications in various branches of biology. CRISPR-Cas9 nuclease system displaced the previously used tools and their flaws in site-specific mutagenesis. Thus, this system was used by Piwu Wang of Jilin Agricultural University and team...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800New Breeding TechnologiesImproved CRISPR System with Power on Switch for Gene Editing is one of the power tools used by molecular biologists in gene-editing. However, the system lacks one important part - a switch. If something goes wrong, there's no switch for shutting it down. Thus, scientists from the University of California, Berkeley worked on improving the system. The researchers used circular permutation and reorganize...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800New Breeding TechnologiesNRGene and Kayagene Introduce the First Fully-Phased Cannabis Genome a breakthrough research, NRGene, a leading agricultural genomics company based in Israel, and Kayagene, a California-based cannabis breeding company, have announced the completion of the first fully-phased cannabis genome using NRGene's DeNovoMAGIC technology. "We have now only begun to realize the potential in cannabis, as over 99% of its genet...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800Beyond Crop BiotechInternational Conference on Industrial Crops Association for the Advancement of Industrial Crops (AAIC) will hold its 31st Annual Meeting with the theme "Advancing the adoption of industrial crops through innovation and technology." The event takes place on September 8-11, 2019 at the El Conquistador Resort in Tucson, Arizona, USA. The conference will cover research and development activi...Wed, 13 Feb 2019 17:00:00 +0800Announcements