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Agricultural Biotechnology

5 key requirements for unleashing innovation in the cannabis industry

The cannabis industry faces a systemic problem where the legal nomenclature used to distinguish varietals of ​Cannabis Sativa is known to be unrelated to the genetic identity of the plant.1 Cannabis plants being bought and sold under any specific trade name can be genetically unrelated and may not even have a shared cultivation history.

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Managing plant stress in the era of climate change: Realising global sustainable development goals

Dr Salme Timusk was the first to show that native soil bacteria have the ability to protect plants against drought conditions. Salme writes here about plant microbiome interaction studies: how they can facilitate plant health and contribute to solutions for climate change.

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11 ways to enable more UK patients to benefit from medicinal cannabis

Medicinal cannabis was legalised in the UK in November 2018, yet there have been fewer than ten new prescriptions made through the NHS. Most of the prescriptions made have been private, and are financially out of reach for most patients, costing up to £2000 per month.

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A Universal Genetic Switch for Increasing Plant Yields, Stress Tolerance and Perishable Product Shelf Life

Food waste is a significant problem globally and contributes to huge agricultural losses. Roughly one-third of all food is wasted: 1.3 billion tons per year. It is no surprise that the UN has a Sustainable Development Goal of cutting food waste in half by 2030.

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Why are start-ups such hotbeds for innovation?

This article is republished with kind permission from BioVox. This article was guest authored with Biovox by Willem Broekaert, from V-Bio Ventures.

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Integrating new breeding technologies: a game changer for developing future crops

With an ever-increasing human population, predicted to be 10 billion people by 2050, studies estimate that we need to double the rate of genetic gain in our crop improvement programs globally to meet this demand. Dr Lee Hickey is a plant breeder and crop geneticist. He and his team are seeking to develop plant breeding tools that could help to enable this genetic gain. 

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Vertically transmitted endophyte improved plant-rhizobacteria interaction

Plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB) have been identified as potential biofertilizers, eco-friendly, renewable and have been demonstrated to actively restore soil fertility. Beyond this, they have been shown to be a promising biological resource to augment chemical fertilizer, and drastically reduce its application and subsequent negative effects.

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The future of GMOs, gene editing and plant biotechnology in post-Brexit UK

Growing and selling genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is permitted in the UK but GMO products are subject to a lengthy and stringent EU authorization process. There are currently no GM crops grown commercially in the UK, but they are imported. So, what is the UK’s relationship with GM products, and where do we stand on gene editing? We spoke with Nigel Halford, Principal Research Scientist at Rothamsted Research, UK.

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