Agriculture / Article / Asia / Biotechnology / Environment / Genetics / ILRI / India / North America / Seeds / USA

‘Nature’ takes a hard look at the ‘messy middle ground’ — the ‘difficult adolescence’ — of GM crops

Cover of a special issue of ‘Nature’ on GMOs, 2 May 2013. The leading British science journal Nature has published a special issue on GM crops: Promise and reality  (2 May 2013). This hub of updated science-based information on GM crops includes feature news stories, commentaries, a podcast and more. ‘Foreign genes were successfully introduced into … Continue reading

Agriculture / Biotechnology / East Africa / Event / Food Security / Research / Uganda

GMOs good for Africa–Calestous Juma, Kenyan biotechnology expert and Harvard professor

Calestous Juma, a Kenyan agricultural and biotechnology expert and professor at Harvard University, gave the keynote presentation at the 2011 launch of Bio-Innovate, at ILRI’s Nairobi campus (photo credit: ILRI). Biotechnology and genetic engineering have the potential to do for agriculture what mobile technology has done for the communications sector in Africa, a renowned Harvard … Continue reading

Agriculture / Biotechnology / East Africa / Event / ILRI / Innovation Systems / Research

Bio-Innovate’s next steps: Bio-Incubate, Bio-Communicate…

The first Bio Innovate regional scientific conference (25-27 February 2013) ended last week with a focus on next steps and ‘big actions’ to come. On the last day, participants worked on three different strands: Crop productivity improvement and climate change adaptation Environmental management technologies Innovation incubation and value addition. The groups pondered bottlenecks in the enabling … Continue reading

Africa / Agriculture / Biotechnology / East Africa / Event / Research

Bio-Innovate regional scientific conference to explore successes challenges in applying bioscience innovation in East Africa

Eastern Africa will be the focus of a transformational forum to harness the power of biosciences innovations later this month, when more than 120 scientists, policy makers, the private sector, donors, and other stakeholders gather at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia for the 1st Bio-Innovate Regional Scientific Conference at the United Nations Conference Centre,  from 25-27 February … Continue reading

Animal Breeding / Biotechnology / East Africa / Event / Film and video / Genetics / ILRI / Indigenous Breeds / Interview / Kenya / Staff

Kenyan Bridgit Muasa on cross-breeding ‘supercows’ for Africa

Watch ‘The Importance of Livestock Production in Kenya’, a short (3:12) filmed interview by FarmingFirst at Rio+20 of 2010 AWARD Fellow Bridgit Muasa, a Kenyan livestock breeding specialist mentored by ILRI scientist Karen Marshall. Bridgit Muasa, from Kenya, is a veterinary officer with the Kenya Ministry of Livestock Development. She has been mentored in the African … Continue reading

Animal Breeding / Biotechnology / Cattle / Dairying / Genetics

Dairy scientists of the genomics age: How big data transformed the dairy industry

Holstein-Friesian cow, Biggle cow book, Philadelphia, W Atkinson Co., 1898 (photo on Flickr by Biodiversity Heritage Library). Dairy scientists are the Gregor Mendels of the genomics age, developing new methods for understanding the link between genes and living things, all while quadrupling the average cow’s milk production since your parents were born. ‘While there are … Continue reading

Africa / Agriculture / ASF / BecA / Biotechnology / Genetics / Presentation / Project / Research

African biosciences ‘hub’ highlighted at AAAS meeting in Vancouver

With international funding, the Biosciences eastern and central Africa Hub (BecA-ILRI Hub), based in Nairobi, Kenya, and managed by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), is enabling African and international scientists to partner on a wide range of new and exciting research programs. Most of these research programs focus on both animal and crop health … Continue reading

Animal Diseases / Biotechnology / Diagnostics / Disease Control / Drylands / East Africa / Emerging Diseases / Environment / Epidemiology / Event / Human Health / ILRI / Kenya / Research / RVF / Southern Africa / USA / Zoonotic Diseases

Could Rift Valley fever be a weapon of mass destruction? An insidious insect-animal-people infection loop explored

The Fifth Plague: Livestock Disease, woodcut by Gustave Doré, 1866 (public domain, via Wikimedia Commons). Anthrax, bird flu , Ebola, HIV-AIDS, H1N1, H5N1, influenza, Rift Valley fever, SARS: What are the disease links between people, animals and environments? And what are we doing to protect ourselves against the next outbreak of a deadly infectious disease? … Continue reading

Africa / Animal Diseases / Australia / BecA / Biotechnology / Cattle / CBPP / Disease Control / Goats / ILRI / PPR / Sheep / Small Ruminants / Vaccines

Australia steps up support for research in Africa to reduce the continent’s heavy livestock disease burden

ILRI scientist Joerg Jores (right) tells German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who visited the ILRI-BecA labs in July 2011, about his livestock disease research (photo credit: ILRI/Njoroge). ‘Owning large livestock is like money in the bank for African farmers, but major diseases significantly threaten their future. ‘Among these are [peste des petits ruminants], a viral disease … Continue reading