Knowledge for Development

DivSeek mines the genetic treasure in seed bank vaults


Date: 10/03/2015


A new initiative, DivSeek, was unveiled in January 2015. This programme systematically characterizes the genetic, physical, and biochemical makeup of banked seeds in the hope of exploiting traits such as drought tolerance and pest resistance that could help the development of better crop varieties. The 69-member DivSeek consortium, which includes the world’s leading agricultural research centres, expects that DivSeek will help agricultural gene banks to make the transition from warehouses for plant seeds to become seed centres that can start to capitalize on the often hidden value of some 7 million seed deposits held in more than 1700 repositories around the world.  (Science, 09/01/2015)

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