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CIMMYT Maize Program, strategic plan: 1995 and beyond

Author: Murenga, G.M.
Author: Mugo, S.
Author: Odhiambo, B.
Author: McLean, S.D.
Author: Taracha, C.
Year: 2004
Abstract: The application of biotechnology and its wide range of tools pose new challenges to governments that require biosafety frameworks be in place for the safe and responsible use of the genetically modified organisms and their products. However, there is a need for all stakeholders to be more serious about institutional learning, and change through a balanced approach. The focus should be on the most relevant and available scientific basis for the debate on biotechnology and its tools in addition to other life sciences contributing to the solutions to hunger and poverty in the world over. Today, ‘genetic engineering’ is increasingly being applied in agricultural and horticultural research, health, environmental protection, industry and social sciences. However, ‘fears’ and ‘concerns’ raised about ethical and safety aspects have emerged that call for safe and responsible application of modern biotechnology to ensure avoidance of inadvertent harm to human health, environment and biodiversity. To ensure that these c ncerns are addressed biotechnology should be developed and applied within the framework of biosafety. These frameworks should include putting in place appropriate biotechnology and biosafety legal provisions, regulations and guidelines related to specific use. To this end, the government of Kenya through the National Council for Science and Technology (NCST) developed and published the Guidelines for Biosafety in Biotechnology in 1998. In the same breadth, the institutional Advisory Committee on Biosafety (KACB) developed a draft for KARI’s Guidelines and Regulations for Biosafety in Biotechnology Research in 1994. These biosafety guidelines outline the general biosafety policies and procedures of the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) to ensure the safety of research with 1 genetically engineered organisms, that of the products, the personnel, agriculture, environment and biodiversity. The methods for the safe handling of transgenic materials in both the biosafety greenhouse and/or laboratory envir nment are described in the Guidelines for Biosafety in Biotechnology Research. The general applicability of these guidelines on genetic modifications include all recombinant DNA (rDNA) methodologies. Information about handling transgenic plants in biosafety greenhouses in Kenya is however, relatively sparse. Currently, though, there is no single source of practical guidance on managing biosafety greenhouses containing transgenics, nor on the requirements for building or renovating plant growth facilities to make them suitable for containing transgenic plants, the products and associated organisms. KARI in conjunction with International Centre for Maize and Wheat Improvement (CIMMYT), with the support of Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture, working on the Insect Resistant Maize for Africa (IRMA) project have developed a biosafety level II greenhouse complex (hereinafter referred to as biosafety greenhouse) at the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute’s Biotechnology Centre. These facilities are new nd operational. The biosafety greenhouse contains three greenhouses, which meet the national biosafety standards based on the National Biosafety Committee (NBC) and the KARI Advisory Committee on Biosafety (KACB) requirements. These biosafety greenhouses at KARI Biotechnology Centre serve as bio-containment facilities that provide highly effective means of isolation and prevention of unintended transmission of genetic material. The disposal of genetic material from maize is prevented through reproductive, spatial and temporal isolation.
Format: PDF
Language: English
Publisher: KARI
Publisher: CIMMYT
Serie: IRMA Project Document
Copyright: CIMMYT manages Intellectual Assets as International Public Goods. The user is free to download, print, store and share this work. In case you want to translate or create any other derivative work and share or distribute such translation/derivative work, please contact indicating the work you want to use and the kind of use you intend; CIMMYT will contact you with the suitable license for that purpose.
Type: Handbook
Country focus: Kenya
Region: Eastern Africa
Place of Publication: Nairobi
Pages: 29 pages
Serie Number: 14
Agrovoc: ZEA MAYS
Agrovoc: ZEA MAYS

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This item appears in the following Collection(s)

  • Genetic Resources
    Genetic Resources including germplasm collections, wild relatives, genotyping, genomics, and IP
  • Maize
    Maize breeding, phytopathology, entomology, physiology, quality, and biotech

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