Nasdaq GlobeNewswire

Cornell receives $35M to support cassava development for smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa

Del

Ithaca, New York, Feb. 15, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cassava is vital to the food security of millions of Africans who eat some form of the root crop daily. Although cassava breeders are making progress, they still face significant challenges in developing disease-resistant varieties that also increase overall yield and respond to the needs of smallholder farmers and processors. Cornell University will expand international efforts to deliver improved varieties of cassava to smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa with $35 million in new funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and UK aid from the United Kingdom.

"This grant funds a second five-year phase that will allow us to build on previous work and focus on getting improved varieties into farmers' fields," said Ronnie Coffman, international plant breeder and director of Cornell's International Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, who leads the project. 

During Phase 1 of the Next Generation Cassava Breeding project - also funded by the Gates Foundation and UK aid from 2012 to 2017 - researchers shortened the breeding cycle for new cassava varieties by improving flowering and using genomic selection. Through analyzing plant genotypes and identifying cassava lines with desirable traits, such as resistance to cassava brown streak disease or high dry matter content, breeders also improved their ability to make selections based on genetics and probability without having to wait for seedlings to reach adulthood. These methods save breeding time for a crop where flowering and sexual propagation are issues.

Another goal of Phase 1 was to make cassava genomic information publicly accessible on an open database. Cassava researchers all over the world are now comparing results and improving breeding programs without duplicating efforts by using Cassavabase. To reduce cost per progeny and improve the quality of data uploaded to Cassavabase in Phase 2, NextGen researchers will use additional methods of whole genome sequencing. 

"Our focus for the next five years will be to translate this research into breeding practices to increase impact," said Chiedozie Egesi, NextGen project director and adjunct professor of plant breeding and genetics at Cornell, who is based at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Nigeria. "A key goal in Phase 2 will be to identify traits preferred by farmers and end-users and incorporate them into new cassava lines to ensure that varieties are responsive to people's needs."

Egesi said, "We believe we will accelerate genetic gain as well as adopted genetic gain, increase the yields and resilience of cassava production by smallholder farmers, and move African cassava breeding toward greater capacity."

"Among the 30 new clones developed at IITA using our methods, 10 had higher dry matter yield than any clone currently available for smallholder farmers in Nigeria," said Jean-Luc Jannink, a research plant geneticist with the United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service  (USDA-ARS) and Cornell adjunct associate professor in the Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics at Cornell. "Dry matter yield is a close proxy to food yield. Conservatively, we believe that we will increase the rate of genetic gain in cassava by 30 to 50 percent." 

Said Peter Kulakow, IITA cassava breeder and geneticist: "Genetic gain is a measure of the improvement of plant performance between generations and a goal of most modern breeding programs. Swifter improvements mean more new varieties can be tested and released." 

At the sixth annual Next Gen Cassava meeting, Feb. 19-24 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, teams of NextGen breeders, geneticists, data analysts, computer programmers, food technologists, social scientists and crop protectionists will be focusing on goals for Phase 2 and discussing how to better coordinate and leverage the exchange of germplasm and genotypic and phenotypic data from each other.

Developing capacity for sustainable breeding programs

Compared with other major staples like maize, rice and wheat, cassava has undergone few advances in productivity and yield over the last 50 years, making it an ideal candidate for breeding improvement. Because cassava is clonally propagated and has a low multiplication rate, it can take almost six to eight years before a new cassava variety makes it from breeders' nurseries through field trials to farmers' fields. Most breeding efforts focus on product development  - goals set by scientists and researchers without accounting for the preferences of farmers. In practice, this can result in poor adoption of new varieties and unrealized potential. 

"Breeders must be able to more quickly develop cassava varieties that resist diseases, are climate resilient and meet the needs of end-users and consumers," said Egesi.

Strengthening the capacity of national breeding programs will be critical in achieving self-sustaining breeding systems in sub-Saharan Africa. Over the next five years, NextGen researchers will continue to train the next generation of sub-Sahara African cassava breeders in modern plant breeding techniques like genomic selection and improved breeding methods.

International and regional partnerships are another important element of sustainability. NextGen researchers are reaching out to their counterparts in Ghana, Rwanda, Mozambique, Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of Congo to create a broader network of researchers who can work together to improve livelihoods and food security.

In Africa, NextGen collaborators include the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, the National Root Crops Research Institute and West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement in Nigeria; the National Crops Resources Research Institute and Makerere University in Uganda; and the Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute in Tanzania. In South America, collaborators include Embrapa in Brazil and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture in Colombia. In the US, collaborators are Cornell University (who leads the project), the Boyce Thompson Institute at Cornell, the University of Hawaii, and the USDA-ARS in Ithaca.

For more information see www.nextgencassava.org   

 

 

# # #

Attachments:

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/d1896398-975a-4943-85b0-4f4b165f5678

Attachments:

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/4e3e5f6e-d4b9-45d1-b74d-8248eb7bb1ba

Linda McCandless
Cornell University 
6072275920
llm3@cornell.edu



This announcement is distributed by Nasdaq Corporate Solutions on behalf of Nasdaq Corporate Solutions clients.
The issuer of this announcement warrants that they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the information contained therein.
Source: Cornell University via Globenewswire

Om Nasdaq GlobeNewswire

Nasdaq GlobeNewswire
Nasdaq GlobeNewswire
One Liberty Plaza - 165 Broadway
NY 10006 New York

+1 212 401 8700http://www.nasdaqomx.com

NASDAQ (NASDAQ: NDAQ) is a leading provider of trading, exchange technology, information and public company services across six continents.

Følg saker fra Nasdaq GlobeNewswire

Registrer deg med din epostadresse under for å få de nyeste sakene fra Nasdaq GlobeNewswire på epost fortløpende. Du kan melde deg av når som helst.

Siste saker fra Nasdaq GlobeNewswire

Two London ex-Bankers launch first UK regulated Digital Asset Trading Platform and Crypto exchange accessible to Institutional Investors16.7.2018 17:37Pressemelding

LONDON, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- UK's first native crypto exchange platform is on its way to become a reality. Sovren Exchange, a venture founded by a team of London-based banking executives, has announced an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) to begin Q3 of this year. For their launch, Sovren (SVRN) is raising a maximum of 10 Million USD (combination of Equity Funding and its own Sovren Token) to create a hybrid order book and brokerage exchange platform that uses a trading engine supported by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA). Sovren will have a fully compliant platform that will support trading in derivates, equities, commodities and securities. The platform will use intelligent automation to address liquidity challenges and a 3rd party custodial service for additional protection with a European Bank. Sovren is supporting trading between all major crypto assets and fiat currencies like pounds, euros, and dollars, aiming for same day service and low,

TANTALEX Announces Entering into An Agreement with Respect to the Acquisition of an Exploitation Permit for the Historical Manono-Kitotolo Mine Tailings16.7.2018 16:48Pressemelding

TORONTO and MUNICH, Germany, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- TANTALEX Resources Corporation (CSE:TTX) (FSE:1T0) ("TANTALEX" or the "Corporation"), is pleased to announce that its 90% owned subsidiary Buckell SAS ("Buckell") has entered into an assignment agreement (the "Agreement") to acquire Mines d'Or Resources ("Minor") 65% participation in a joint venture entity to which will be transferred the PER 13698 (Permis Exploitation Rejets) ("PER 13698"). PER 13698 grants exclusive rights to mine the tailings of the historical Manono-Kitotolo mine for lithium, tin and tantalum. The new entity will be named Société des Tailings de Manono ("STM") and will be owned 65% by Buckell, 30% by La Congolaise D'Exploitation Minière ("La Cominière") and 5% by Minor. The closing of the contemplated transaction by Buckell is subject to various conditions and payments, namely, but not limited to, the successful transfer and registration of the PER 13698 in the name of the newly created entity STM with

2018 Farnborough Air Show Marks Debut of Bombardier New ATMOSPHÈRE Cabin16.7.2018 12:00Pressemelding

MONTRÉAL, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Bombardier Commercial Aircraft unveiled the interior of the first CRJ Series aircraft with the new ATMOSPHÈRE cabin design on the opening day of the Farnborough International Air Show in the United Kingdom. Bombardier showcased the new cabin alongside launch operator Delta Air Lines and supplier Zodiac Aerospace during its air show inauguration event. "Our product is evolving, and this signature cabin design represents the latest innovation to our very successful regional jet program," said Fred Cromer, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. "This cabin design will add value to airlines, the feedback has already been very positive as demonstrated with the recent momentum we have gained in the market." The CRJ900 aircraft on static display at the airshow is painted in Delta Air Lines livery and fitted with the ATMOSPHÈRE cabin. Bombardier will also emphasize its presence at the airshow from July 16-20 with a display of a Q400 aircraft in t

Aviation Solutions Provider Hawker Pacific to Collaborate with Pratt Whitney Canada on Array of Engine Maintenance Services16.7.2018 11:00Pressemelding

Agreement covers most PWC engine models and Digital Engine Services in Asia Pacific and the Middle East FARNBOROUGH, England, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC), a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX), today announced it has signed an agreement with Hawker Pacific under which the two companies will work together in a number of areas to further enhance the delivery of customer services and solutions. The comprehensive agreement spans most P&WC engine models and diagnostics and prognostics products across all segments: business aviation, general aviation, offshore, utility, regional aviation and defense and security. "Our agreement with P&WC is a testament to our continued commitment to delivering world class services and support to customers in Asia Pacific and the Middle East," said Doug Park, COO, Hawker Pacific. "We are thrilled to be working closely with P&WC to further extend their world class service network and deliver exceptional value

Fortuna reports production of 2.3 million ounces of silver and 14,557 ounces of gold for the second quarter of 201816.7.2018 11:00Pressemelding

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. (NYSE:FSM) (TSX:FVI) is pleased to report production results for the second quarter of 2018 from its two operating mines in Latin America, the San Jose Mine in Mexico and the Caylloma Mine in Peru. The Company produced 2.3 million ounces of silver and 14,557 ounces of gold plus base metal by-products. Silver and gold production for the first six months totaled 4.7 million ounces and 29,597 ounces respectively; being 13 percent and 20 percent above the Company's mid-year projection. Fortuna is on schedule to produce 8.3 million ounces of silver and 48.3 thousand ounces of gold or 11.4 million Ag Eq1 ounces in 2018 in accordance with our production guidance (see Fortuna news release dated January 17, 2018). Second Quarter Production Highlights Silver production of 2,321,315 ounces; 10 percent increase over Q2 2017 Gold production of 14,557 ounces; in line with Q2 2017 Lead production of 7,186,541 pou

YouGov poll reveals UK adults are seeking innovative, digital payment experiences from their banks16.7.2018 01:04Pressemelding

New research showcases a list of innovative ways we'd like better protection against fraud and a more active role in controlling our payment cards· Switching cards on and off for better fraud controls, quickly reactivating blocked cards and mobile app based self-service is the future London, UK, July 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- UK adults are ready for real-time interaction with their banks. The results of a recent YouGov survey, on behalf of Ondot, revealed today that online security and fraud prevention comes top in what Brits think banks should guarantee, with 60% wanting 'peace of mind' when using cards online. The survey also discovered that consumers are keen to play a much more proactive role in managing their personal finances. New ways of managing their card services before, during and after a payment; how, when and where cards are used and the ability switch your card 'on' and 'off' to create extra vigilance against fraud - are all important to today's card user. The omnibus

I vårt presserom finner du alle våre siste saker, kontaktpersoner, bilder, dokumenter og annen relevant informasjon om oss.

Besøk vårt presserom