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Open source science: Scientists researching rice plant genetics agree to not file for patents

The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), a nonprofit established in the 2014 Farm Bill with bipartisan congressional support, awarded a $1 million Seeding Solutions grant to University of California, Davis (UC Davis) to study the genetics of rice plants. Together with researchers at the University of North Carolina and collaborators, the team will develop and implement a chemistry-driven gene discovery approach to identify genes that modulate root traits.

To accomplish their goals, the team will create and characterize a set of kinase inhibitors that collectively inhibit most of the kinases in rice. The starting point will be approximately 1,000 human kinase inhibitors carefully selected from a library of chemical compounds donated to the partnership from eight pharmaceutical companies. The set will be distributed without restriction to scientists studying other plants and traits, thus serving as a broadly useful platform. The team has agreed to operate under open access principles – specifically prohibiting filing for IP on any of the results and will communicate the results widely.

“An open science approach will allow us to build our understanding of genes that influence root growth more effectively and efficiently,” said David Drewry, Ph.D., co-PI and professor at University of North Carolina.

Read full, original post: FFAR Awards $1 Million Grant to Create Open Source Technology for Gene Discovery in Plants

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