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US NIFA grants $3.5 m for weed studies

The USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) has awarded eight universities a total of $3.5 million in grants to fund research for the management, control or elimination of weedy or invasive species. The awards are administered through the NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants priority area in the Foundational Program. Seven projects will receive funds close to $500,000 each. These include a study of genetic adaptations in herbicide-resistant kochia by Colorado State University; genetic profiling of the noxious weed, cogongrass, to identify potential biological controls (Texas A&M University); and the development of biosafety measures to control invasive biofuels crops (Minnesota University) in addition to projects at Cincinnati University, Illinois University, Montana State University and the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (Peoria, Illinois). The US National Academy of Sciences (Washington, DC) will receive $35,000.

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