CLC Bio joins VIRCA project
Danish bioinformatics company CLC Bio (Aarhus) has joined the international humanitarian virus-resistant cassava for Africa (VIRCA) project co-ordinated by the US-based Donald Danforth Plant Science Center (St Louis, Missouri). The Danish company will provide its proprietary software to analyse and map small interfering RNAs to aid development and identification of elite cassava lines for testing under field conditions in east Africa. Other participants in the VIRCA project include the Ugandan National Crops Resources Research Institute and the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute. VIRCA is applying RNA interference technology to enhance resistance to virus diseases in cassava cultivars preferred by farmers ( Agrow No 624, p22). Disease-resistant cassava lines developed through the project will be available to smallholder farmers on a royalty-free basis.