Thursday, September 5, 2019

Advancing pest resilience through molecular breeding

Phnom Penh -  The Leveraging Diversity for Ecologically-Based Pest Management (VERDE) project in Cambodia advanced their capacity building efforts with a training workshop on molecular breeding techniques.

Funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and coordinated by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), the VERDE project aims to develop smart deployment of pest-resistant genes, test ecological engineering mechanisms for managing rice pests, and reduce pesticide dependency without negative impacts on yield.

Molecular breeding is an advanced technological tool that can be harnessed for developing rice varieties with genetic resistance to a variety of pests and biotic stresses. 

The 2-day workshop, facilitated by IRRI scientist Dr. Mallikarjuna Swamy and assisted by Corinne Mira Marofori-Nazarea and Tapas Kumar Hore from the IRRI Rice Breeding Platform, was held last 29 August 2019 at the Royal University of Agriculture (RUA) in southwest Phnom Penh.

Sixteen participants from VERDE partners and stakeholders in Cambodia, including researchers from the Cambodian Agricultural Research and Development Institute, faculty and students from RUA, and research staff from the General Directorate of Agriculture, joined the training.

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