Sir Mark Walport's visit at IPU

On 17th January 2019, Sir Mark Walport, Chief Executive of the newly formed UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), took great interest in the ongoing work of the NEWS India-UK and spent over an hour discussing the findings so far and their future potential. Prof. Raghuram explained how the project has several component that integrate lab level work on plant phenotype-genotype characterization for NUE in his lab at IPU with the work of other partners on field level agronomy and cropping system level understanding, towards national scenario modelling.

Sir Mark Walport was pleased to note that by combining forward genetics for phenotyping with functional genomics and reverse genetics for genotyping, the project is trying to cut short an otherwise decades long research programme. He enquired about the Indian experience with the UK collaboration and saw the infrastructural facilities added during the project. He was particularly glad to know that apart from importing the best equipment from the UK, the EU and elsewhere, the project also contributed to indigenous capacity building by customizing the growth chamber and greenhouse to exacting demands of the project. He also saw the activation-tagged rice lines over-expressing candidate genes for NUE growing in the greenhouse and interacted with research scholars working in the lab. 

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