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GM Crop Scientists Win World Food Prize
Friday, 2013/06/21 | 07:58:44

 Three agri-biotechnology experts have been hailed as the 2013 World Food Prize (WFP) Laureates. One of them is Dr. Marc Van Montagu, Founder and Chairman of the Institute of Plant Biotechnology Outreach (IPBO) based in Ghent, Belgium. He used to work on crown gall disease and was one of the discoverers of the plant tumor-inducing soil microbe (Agrobacterium tumefaciens) which carries a circular molecule of DNA labelled as "Ti plasmid". Later on, Montagu and Mary-Del Chilton, another 2013 WFP Laureate, demonstrated that a portion of the plasmid is copied and transferred into the genome of the  infected plant cell.


Mary-Del Chilton, Founder and Distinguished Science Fellow of Syngenta Biotechnology, Inc., and her team further investigated the mechanism of Agrobacterium which she used to develop the first transgenic tobacco plant. Her work provided evidence that plant genomes can be modified in a more accurate manner than was possible using conventional plant breeding.


Another Laureate is Dr. Robert T. Fraley, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Monsanto. Fraley's research team produced the first transgenic plants using the Agrobacterium transformation process. Fraley was also the key person in the introduction of GE soybean that can tolerate herbicide. He has especially championed making biotechnology accessible to small-holder farmers.


Read the press release at http://www.w  orldfoodprize.org/en/laureates/2013_laureates/



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