Cornell receives $35M to support cassava development for smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa
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
# # #
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/d1896398-975a-4943-85b0-4f4b165f5678
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/4e3e5f6e-d4b9-45d1-b74d-8248eb7bb1ba
Linda McCandless Cornell University 6072275920 firstname.lastname@example.org
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
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
FOUR IN FIVE EXECUTIVES AGREE AGILITY IS MOST IMPORTANT CHARACTERISTIC OF A SUCCESSFUL ORGANIZATION18.9.2018 16:03 | Pressemelding
New research by Forbes Insights and sponsored by Scrum Alliance brings light to the “elusive” Agile enterprise Denver Colorado, Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: MEDIA CONTACT: September 18, 2018 Heather Leigh, Public Relations Director 720-443-7314,email@example.com www.scrumalliance.org SEPTEMBER 18, 2018 – DENVER, CO – A new report by Forbes Insights finds 81 percent of respondents agree on the critical importance of agility when it comes to leading a successful organization. The report, “The Elusive Agile Enterprise,” was sponsored by Scrum Alliance, a Scrum certifying body and the largest professional association of Agile practitioners worldwide. In preparing the report, the Forbes Insights team surveyed more than 1,000 C-level executives worldwide, and also conducted one-on-one interviews with leaders of select “champion” organizations, including GEHealthcare, J. Walter Thompson Company, Nokia, Team WIKISPEED, Toyota Connected and Unis
Cloudian Joins iRODS Consortium18.9.2018 15:00 | Pressemelding
HyperStore Enterprise Object Storage Validated with iRODS Platform SAN MATEO, Calif., Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cloudian today announced the company has joined the iRODS Consortium, the foundation that leads development and support of the integrated Rule-Oriented Data System (iRODS). Testing for HyperStore enterprise object storage with iRODS is complete, and users may now deploy the combined solution where local workflows require cost-effective, exabyte-scalable storage and ease of integration. iRODS is free open source software for data discovery, workflow automation, secure collaboration and data virtualization used by research and business organizations around the globe. Easily deployed in an existing infrastructure, iRODS creates a unified namespace and a metadata catalog of all the data and users within the storage environment. With the iRODS rule engine framework, users can completely automate an organization’s data management policy. “We’re thrilled to be working with
Harbert European Growth Capital Announces Final Close18.9.2018 14:35 | Pressemelding
LONDON, Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Harbert European Growth Capital (“HEGCF”), is pleased to announce the final close of its second fund (“Fund II”) at €215 million, a substantial increase over Harbert European Growth Capital Fund I (“Fund I”). HEGCF, which provides debt capital to fund growth opportunities across technology, life science and other innovative sectors attracted significant institutional capital, as well as numerous family office investors. “We are grateful for the support and trust that our existing and new investors have placed in us,” said David Bateman, Senior Managing Director and co-head of HEGCF. “The market opportunity remains strong with many companies across Europe seeking expansion funding of various forms,” notes Johan Kampe, Senior Managing Director and co-head of HEGCF. It has been a busy start with Fund II already having closed investments in 21 new companies since the first close in summer 2017. HECGF also continues to have follow on investing acti
Teledyne DALSA expands its area camera series with the industry’s first 5 Gigabit, GigE Vision models18.9.2018 14:30 | Pressemelding
Eight new Genie Nano cameras deliver fast, high-resolution inspection for existing GigE Vision machine vision systems WATERLOO, Ontario, Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Teledyne DALSA, a Teledyne Technologies company and global leader in machine vision technology, is pleased to introduce its newest Genie Nano cameras with eight new monochrome and color models built around the industry’s best performing SONY ® image sensors. These industry-first 5-Gigabit GigE Vision cameras feature resolutions from 3.2Mpixels to 12Mpixels with more models to follow before the end of the year – including a 5Mpixel Polarized model. Engineered for imaging applications that require high-speed data transfer, these new Nano models are an easy replacement for cameras built into current vision systems that rely on the existing GigE vision interface standard. These new Genie Nano models feature the brand new 5GBASE-T link speed. IEEE 802.3bz-2016 is the expanded standard for Ethernet over twisted pair copper
Father’s personal experience drives hospitals to improve patient communication18.9.2018 14:00 | Pressemelding
CareCircle fills gap after CarePages closure leaves hospitals in a bind GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After experiencing the challenges that come with communicating with friends and family from during his daughter's chemotherapy treatment for a rare disease, Nathan Loding, 34, of Grand Rapids thought there had to be a better way to keep friends and family updated on his daughter’s condition and get the support their family needed. Thanks to his livelihood as a software developer at Grand Rapids-based global business technology firm OST, he quickly turned his idea into reality. The result is CareCircle (www.carecircle.com), a secure website that allows patients to safely provide updates on their health and share private information with a select audience. The site launched Sept. 1 and has already been piloted by one of the nation’s largest health care systems. The platform is wholly-owned and operated by OST. CareCircle’s launch is very timely, as popular patie
Talend Supports La Mutuelle Générale to Power its AWS Cloud Data Lake18.9.2018 14:00 | Pressemelding
Health Insurance Company Accelerates the Implementation of New Services and Strengthen Business Applications REDWOOD CITY, Calif. & SURESNES, France, Sept. 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Talend (NASDAQ: TLND), a global leader in cloud data integration solutions, today announced that La Mutuelle Générale, a leading provider of insurance solutions for businesses and individuals, has chosen Talend Cloud Platform to support the company in their project to build an Amazon Web Services (AWS)-based cloud data lake to serve as the foundation of all their data initiatives. With Talend, La Mutuelle Générale provides self-service data access for its data scientists to improve customer relations and offer innovative services. "As is the case in many industries, the insurance sector is in the midst of a transformation from a technical to a service industry. As part of our global business approach, we place digitalization, data and innovation at the heart of our strategy and customer satisfaction," sa
I vårt presserom finner du alle våre siste saker, kontaktpersoner, bilder, dokumenter og annen relevant informasjon om oss.Besøk vårt presserom