Scientists urge senate to support CRISPR for agricultural innovation

May 09, 2024


Georg Jander, a professor at the Boyce Thompson Institute, recently addressed the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, advocating for the support and funding of emerging agricultural technologies. His presentation, titled “The Next Agricultural Revolution - Targeted Gene Editing Using CRISPR,” showcased the revolutionary impact of CRISPR technology on farming.

Jander described CRISPR as initiating a “new green revolution” by allowing precise plant gene editing, a feat that was previously impossible. He explained how CRISPR enables the modification of crop genes to enhance desirable traits, suppress undesirable ones, and introduce new characteristics from different species.

Dan Jenkins from Pairwise and Emily Negrin from Inari joined Jander, sharing insights into how their companies are applying CRISPR gene editing to improve crops. They discussed practical applications, such as enhancing crop yield, resilience, and nutritional value, demonstrating the real-world benefits of CRISPR technology.

In his news release, Jander emphasized CRISPR’s potential to greatly enhance food security, agricultural sustainability, and crop durability. He stated, “CRISPR holds immense promise for boosting food security, enhancing agricultural sustainability, and increasing crop durability.”

The aim of the presentation was to educate policymakers on CRISPR’s crucial role in modern agriculture and to secure necessary support and funding for further research and development. Scientists believe that by leveraging CRISPR technology, they can address significant global challenges related to food security and sustainable farming practices.