JNF and the Tel Aviv University hope to harvest research

April 19, 2017 by J-Wire Staff
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A substantial donation is funding a new project initiated with a partnership between the Jewish National Fund of Australia and the Tel Aviv University to prevent disease in cereal crops.

The funds were made available as a result of a six figure bequest from the estate of a member of the Sydney Jewish community who passed away in August 2015. The cheque was recently presented to Dan Springer, CEO of JNF Australia, and Meir Buber, Head of Resource Development, English-speaking Countries for Tel Aviv University at the Sydney offices of the JNF.

The results of the research are hoped to benefit crop production worldwide.

Both expressed their thanks to the Executors of the estate, who were also present, and the hope that this was to be yet another successful partnership between their organisations for the benefit of Israel and the world.

The benefactor’s family have requested that his identity and precise amount of the bequest remain anonymous, they have agreed that both the JNF and the University report that the project that has now been initiated.

The Project for Wheat Disease Resistance had its genesis in the Tel Aviv University’s Institute for Cereal Crops Improvement…a global leader in the science that produces more durable cereal varieties. One of the keys to the Institute’s success is its gene-bank of wild cereals – the world’s largest and most diverse collection of wild wheat-related species. Whilst not involving the highly contentious practice of genetic engineering (GMO), the Institute’s highly trained scientists will focus on the wide-scale identification of disease-resistant genes in wheat related wild species using highly specialised methods.

A JNF spokesman said: “The Project’s funding will support costly phenotyping and sequencing expenses, the acquisition and maintenance of plant growth facilities, and research fellowships, with an expected final result of a collection of disease resistant genes for use in wheat improvement. “

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