Disease-resistant GMO cassava developed by Kenyan scientists moves closer to approval

Nicksonn Muturi cassava

Cassava farmers are about five years away from accessing disease-resistant genetically modified varieties, currently being tested in specific locations around the country.

Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation (Kalro) scientists are developing a transgenic variety that is resistant to the Cassava Mosaic Virus and the Cassava Brown Streak Disease the two diseases that have in recent years destroyed the crop causing farmers massive losses and threatening food security in rural Kenya.

[Simon Gichuki, a senior principal research officer at Kalro] said both diseases, especially the cassava mosaic, have been destroying the crop for a very long time, making the intervention critical.

The first phase of the project involved proving that it was possible to develop a genetically modified resistant variety.

In the second phase, the scientists focused on taking disease resistant genes and inserting them in cassava varieties of farmers’ preference, without necessarily having to create a whole new variety.

The project is now in the third and final phase of seeking regulatory approval.

The GMO cassava research is not only being conducted in Kenya but also in neighbouring Uganda, because just like Kenya, Uganda has suffered massive cassava losses caused by the two diseases.

Read full, original post: Kenya inching closer to disease-free GMO cassava

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Genetics Unzipped
Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Sometime in 2019, probably in China, SARS CoV-2 figured out a way to interact with a specific "spike" on the ...

Philip Njemanze: Leading African anti-GMO activist claims Gates Foundation destroying Nigeria

Nigerian anti-GMO activist, physician, and inventor pushes anti-gay and anti-GMO ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend