BrisScience: Speed breeding – accelerating crop research

The world has to produce 60-80% more food by 2050 to feed the world’s projected population of 9 billion. However, traditional plant breeding is slow and the current rate of genetic improvement is insufficient to meet this demand.

NASA experiments to grow wheat in space were the inspiration for UQ scientists to develop the world’s first ‘speed breeding’ procedures here on Earth. This enables them to produce up to six generations of major crops per year, compared to the one or two possible with standard growing conditions. This powerful tool is fast-tracking the development of more productive crops in the face of climate change and rapidly evolving pests and diseases.

Join Dr Lee Hickey as he discusses the genetics of disease and drought resistance, and how this can be used to design more robust crops.

When Monday, 11 June 2018
Time 6:30pm to 7:30pm
Venue The Edge, State Library of Queensland, South Brisbane
Arrangements Doors open at 6:00pm
Refreshments Light refreshments will be provided following the presentation
RSVP This is a free event. Please register to secure your seat.

Meet the presenter:

HickeyDr Lee Hickey is a geneticist working on Australia’s most important cereal crops, wheat and barley, situated within the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation at The University of Queensland.

His research team investigates the genetics of disease and drought resistance in order to design more robust crops for farmers.

For his ‘speed breeding’ innovation and science communication, Lee was named the ‘2017 QLD Young Tall Poppy Scientist of the Year’ and currently holds a prestigious ARC DECRA Fellowship.


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