Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Bank of genetic agroforestry

Vine cloned.

A farmer when thinking about the safety of their products, quickly turns to service an insurance company. And if you could also have a bank to save their species and reproduce them quickly needed? Already exists, to answer this question this bank was born within the University of Coimbra (UC).

Elisa and Monica Figueiredo Zuzarte, founders of QualityPlant - Research and Production in Plant Biotechnology, company spin-off UC, dedicated to culture in vitro (cloning techniques) national agroforestry species. It is intended to "preserve and propagate plants, a much faster and more efficient than conventional methods," says Elisa Figueiredo.
And by "cloning techniques" should not be generated "fears", Elisa Figueiredo explains that, for example, "in our garden we prune a rose bush and decided to plant a stakes. What we just did was cloning. We planted two genetically identical ". This is what, in a way, it makes the QualityPlant without genetic manipulation, ie, introduction of information from an individual's genes in another.

Farmers can provide the meristem of their species, ie the plant tissue with cells in vitro and allow the firm to ensure its continuity. "One of the features of this technique is that in a short time succeeded in producing a large number of plants, because they are conditioned to weather conditions. We artificially controlled conditions. The entire process is done under sterile conditions, ie no presence of bacteria, viruses. There are beings that can negatively influence plant ", detailing Elisa Figueiredo.

The interviewee also emphasizes that this process "not only ensures the production of high quality plant plants, but essentially ensures the reduction of production costs for nursery / farmers associated with the elimination of pests or diseases, and improves your productivity , valuing domestic and stimulating Portuguese economy more competitive products, also worldwide. "

Simultaneously, the two entrepreneurs will create a germplasm bank, designated GermplasmBank, ie go to the conservation of plant genetic heritage. This bank presents itself as a "life insurance" plants where producers can "keep" the germplasm of its most promising varieties, ensuring their preservation and future use. The reproduction of a species in bulk can occur within six months, unlike conventional techniques in which playback is time consuming.

Elisa and Monica have their incubation in the Pedro Nunes Institute in Coimbra, and are already devoted to species of vine and olive, "because they are the two agricultural sectors more competitive," but says Elisa, "the technique applies to any production. "

Retrieved from CiênciaHoje - http://www.cienciahoje.pt/index.php?oid=57925&op=all the 06/18/2013

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