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Enhancing the value of genetic resources through science & technology: The role of the BecA Hub

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Enhancing the value of genetic resources through science & technology: The role of the BecA Hub

  1. 1. Enhancing the value of genetic resources through science & technology: The role of the BecA Hub<br />Segenet Kelemu (Director, BecA Hub)<br />Presented at the Bio-Innovate Launch ILRI, Nairobi<br />16 March 2011<br />
  2. 2. Outline<br />Solutions are around the corner…<br />Biopesticides - Baculovirus/cassava hornworm<br />- Other biopesticides<br />Potpourri of examples<br />
  3. 3. Cassava hornworm<br />It is a major pest of cassava causing losses of 50% or more<br />Main control strategy had been insecticides<br />The hornworm virus, Baculovirus erinnyis, naturally infects the pest larvae<br />
  4. 4. Cassava hornworm (Erinnyis ello)<br />
  5. 5. Loss in the field due to cassava hornworm<br />
  6. 6. BACULOVIRUS of E. ello<br />
  7. 7. Process of BV collection<br />Baculovirus <br />as powder<br />Larvae<br />blended<br />solution<br />BACULOVIRUS of E. ello<br />Sick larvae collected in the field<br />
  8. 8. Commercial product BioVirus®<br /> Based on a BACULOVIRUS of Erinnyis ello<br />For the control of cassava hornworm <br />Biotropical, Colombia<br />
  9. 9. Solutions are just around the corner<br />Antibiotics<br />Enzymes (e.g Taq Polymerase)-PCR<br />Agrobacterium as genetic transformation agent<br />
  10. 10. Solutions around the corner….<br />The discovery of penicillin could be the most famous of all medical advances.Millions of lives saved<br />
  11. 11. Solutions are just around the corner<br />Enzymes (e.g Taq Polymerase) <br />
  12. 12. Solutions are just around the corner<br />Agrobacterium: a natural tool for genetic transformation <br />134  million hectares of genetically <br />engineered crops in 2009<br />
  13. 13. Solutions are just around the corner<br />African genetic resources….<br />Coffee<br /><ul><li>Natural decaffeinated coffee (discovered in 2004)
  14. 14. Sources of disease resistance</li></ul>Kola tree (Cola nitida).. Coca cola<br />African prune... Prostate remedy<br />Hoodia (Hoodia gordonii)...the recently popular appetite suppressant dietary supplement<br />Shea butter (Vitellaria paradoxa)...popular cosmetic ingredient<br />Africa has been and continues to be a significant source of medicinal plants to the world’s food, drug, and herb and dietary supplement market<br />
  15. 15. Solutions are just around the corner<br />African genetic resources….<br />Globally, there are more than 1 billion overweight adults, and the number is growing. <br /><ul><li> U.S. weight loss market at $55 billion in 2007
  16. 16. Currently at over $60 billion </li></ul>Hoodia (Hoodiagordonii)... the recently popular <br />appetite suppressant: a new rising star for the <br />weight loss industry<br />“Hoodia fools the brain by making you think <br />you’re full, even if you've eaten just a morsel”<br />
  17. 17. The BecA Hub: its role in African science and technology<br />
  18. 18. BecA’s major objectives<br />Research: hosting, facilitating, conducting and catalyzing research efforts<br />Capacity building and training: enabling students/visiting scientists to undertake hands-on research<br />Research services: providing services to enhance research<br />Serving as a focal point for the agricultural research community; linkage to the global one<br />Promoting product development/delivery: identifying potential development partners<br />
  19. 19.
  20. 20. Conclusion<br />Science & technology is key to enhance the ability of Africans to control and use their natural resources<br />BecA should be a place where discoveries are made<br />

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