Search
Close this search box.

We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Indian institute develops a pest-resistant variety of cotton

In a move to reduce the damage that whitefly pests make, the National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI), Lucknow has developed a pest-resistant variety of cotton.

Whiteflies are one of the top ten devastating pests in the world that damage more than 2,000 plant species and also function as vectors for some 200-plant viruses.

According to a press statement released by the Ministry of Science and Technology, cotton is one of the worst hit crops by these, in 2015, two-thirds of the cotton crop were destroyed by the pest in Punjab.

The institute will start field trials this year from April to October in the Faridkot Centre of Punjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana.

Even though Bt cotton is also genetically-modified cotton and present in the market for farmers usage, the project’s senior scientist, Dr PK Singh, said that Bt cotton is resistant to two pests only; it is not resistant to whiteflies.

In 2007, the institution decided to work on one more insect pest- whiteflies.

To develop this pest-resistant variety, researchers explored 250 plants from lower plant biodiversity to identify novel protein molecules that are toxic to whitefly.

The leaf extracts of all the plants were prepared separately, and whiteflies were allowed to feed on them. Out of the 250 plants, the leaf extract of an edible fern Tectariamacrodonta causes toxicity to the whitefly, Dr Singh noted.

This fern is known to be used in salads in Nepal and as a concoction for gastric disorders in many regions of Asia. It works against whiteflies but being safe for application on the crop plants and provides protection from them.

When whiteflies feed on sub-lethal doses of insecticidal protein, it interferes with the life cycle of insect that, in turn, resulted with very poor egg-laying, abnormal eggs, nymph and larval development, and the poor overall growth of the fly.

However, this protein was found to be un-effective on non-target insects. This clearly shows that the protein is specifically toxic to whitefly and does not cause any harmful effect on other beneficial insects like butterflies and honeybees. As to whether this protein is safe to mammals or not, the toxicity of the protein was also tested on the rat mammalian model, Dr Singh added.

The availability of the product in the market for farmers to use depends on several factors. If the whiteflies tolerance trait that has been introduced into the plant performs the same way in the field, only then it can be given to farmers for cultivation. Researches will have to see if this trait can be an agronomic trait too.

NBRI, on its website, said that it undertakes basic and applied research on various aspects of plant science, including documentation, systematics, conservation, prospection, and genetic improvement. It emphasises on under-exploited, non-traditional, and wild plant genetic resources of the country for sustainable development and human welfare.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

As a Titanium Black Partner of Dell Technologies, CTC Global Singapore boasts unparalleled access to resources.

Established in 1972, we bring 52 years of experience to the table, solidifying our position as a leading IT solutions provider in Singapore. With over 300 qualified IT professionals, we are dedicated to delivering integrated solutions that empower your organization in key areas such as Automation & AI, Cyber Security, App Modernization & Data Analytics, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Renowned for our consulting expertise and delivering expert IT solutions, CTC Global Singapore has become the preferred IT outsourcing partner for businesses across Singapore.

PARTNER

Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

PARTNER

HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.