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UK & USA scientists collaborate to design crops of the future
Date:8/21/2013

e, they hope to develop effective interactions between maize and nitrogen-fixing bacteria.

Professor Philip Poole from the University of Oxford said: "This research could pave the way for a 'Green Revolution' that will increase crop yields for resource-poor farmers and decrease the use and environmental impact of industrial fertilisers by wealthier farmers."

The John Innes Centre's Professor Giles Oldroyd will join Professor Poole on the project and John Peters (Montana State University), Jean-Michel Ane (University of Wisconsin Madison), Michael Udvardi (Samuel Roberts Nobel Foundation) and Christopher Voigt (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) will provide the US expertise.

Prof Douglas Kell, BBSRC Chief Executive said: "The outputs of the Ideas Lab have offered fresh ideas and fresh approaches to the challenge of feeding a growing population in a sustainable way. By bringing together world-leading researchers from the US and UK, we are rethinking current farming practices. Thanks to this exciting research, farms of the future could one day produce crops that do not rely on costly and polluting man-made fertilisers."

Dr John Wingfield, NSF's Assistant Director for Biological Sciences said: "The reliance of artificial nitrogen fertilizers for food crop production and their damaging environmental effects are in many ways underestimated. Fortunately, there are scientists paying attention to how these artificial fertilizers can be replaced by abundant atmospheric nitrogen. NSF's investment in Ideas Lab nitrogen projects provides a unique opportunity to engage cross-disciplinary scientists and engineers to generate novel and innovative approaches to creatively address a worldwide problem."


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Contact: Chris Melvin
chris.melvin@bbsrc.ac.uk
01-793-414-694
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Source:Eurekalert

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