The potential impact of plant biotechnology on the Millennium Development Goals

Yuan, Dawei; Bassie, Ludovic; Sabalza, Maite; Miralpeix, Bruna; Dashevskaya, Svetlana; Farre, Gemma; Rivera, Sol M.; Banakar, Raviraj; Bai, Chao; Sanahuja, Georgina; Arjó, Gemma; Avilla, Eva; Zorrilla-López, Uxue; Ugidos-Damboriena, Nerea; López, Alberto; Almacellas, David; Zhu, Changfu; Capell, Teresa; Hahne, Gunther; Twyman, Richard M.
March 2011
Plant Cell Reports;Mar2011, Vol. 30 Issue 3, p249
Academic Journal
The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are international development targets for the year 2015 that aim to achieve relative improvements in the standards of health, socioeconomic status and education in the world's poorest countries. Many of the challenges addressed by the MDGs reflect the direct or indirect consequences of subsistence agriculture in the developing world, and hence, plant biotechnology has an important role to play in helping to achieve MDG targets. In this opinion article, we discuss each of the MDGs in turn, provide examples to show how plant biotechnology may be able to accelerate progress towards the stated MDG objectives, and offer our opinion on the likelihood of such technology being implemented. In combination with other strategies, plant biotechnology can make a contribution towards sustainable development in the future although the extent to which progress can be made in today's political climate depends on how we deal with current barriers to adoption.


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