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Israeli Startup Cracks Wheat Genome

Israeli startup successfully maps genome of wild emmer wheat

NRGene Technologies, specializing in biotechnology and agriculture, claims to have cracked the genome of wild emmer wheat. This is one of the most complex sequences in existence. In fact, it was so tough to map that the previous attempt by a different organization cost about $54 million and failed. In contrast, NRGene spent under $500,000 and cracked it within a month’s time.

The genome of wild emmer wheat is one of the most complex sequences in nature.

What this means for us is that crops worldwide may be produced and improved at a lower cost, and the process will be easier  and faster. By enriching wheat, Israel may be able to feed people of starving countries. Dr Assaf Distelfeld of Tel Aviv University says, “Technologically, it’s a tremendous achievement.”

Israel's discovery can make wheat production faster and cheaper

This successful research was the result of a collaboration between a large number of universities in Israel, the US, Turkey, and Germany, as well as the US Department of Agriculture. Read more about this fascinating intiative here or check out NRGene’s website.

 

Shira Koenigsberg
Shira Koenigsberg
Shira is American-Israeli and currently lives in Jerusalem. She enjoys yoga, red wine, and good books. Her literary influences include JK Rowling, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Bob Dylan, and Dr Seuss.

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