Crop biotechnology and the future of food

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Abstract or Summary

The global population continues to rise, as does the likelihood of reduced yields of major food crops due to the changing climate, thus making the development of genetically improved, stress-resilient crops a research priority. The convergence of low-cost genome sequencing with improved computational power and high-throughput molecular phenotyping technologies has accelerated the identification of genes underlying important agronomic traits relevant to food production and quality. Here, we discuss the evolution of plant improvement, and how researchers leverage genomic analyses and revolutionary new plant breeding technologies like site-directed nucleases to enhance food crop traits through agricultural biotechnology. Deployment of these products from the laboratory to the field remains hindered by biological and regulatory bottlenecks that require further development.

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