Biotechnology major Monsanto Company has entered into a collaboration with Huazhong Agricultural University of China to further research in plant biotechnology. Under the tie-up the two will undertake joint research in the development of novel traits such as higher yield, drought resistance and nitrogen use efficiency, Monsanto said in a release.
Monsanto said it would evaluate and advance certain technologies developed by a research team led by Qifa Zhang at China's Huazhong Agricultural University.
"We're excited to be working with a prominent research team in China who has demonstrated great expertise in genomics and biotechnology discovery research," said Steve Padgette, vice president of biotechnology for Monsanto. "This collaboration will benefit both parties. Collaborations such as this allow Monsanto to help agriculture meet the challenges of providing food, fuel and fiber for a growing world population," he added.
"Monsanto's proven ability to commercialise and market new technology could enable our research to advance from laboratory concepts to products in the world market at a much accelerated pace," said Professor Zhang, a leading scientist at Huazhong Agricultural University, adding, "The collaboration will accelerate the step of our commitment to provide benefits to farmers and society as a whole."
China is emerging as an important place for research and development in plant biotechnology, said John McLean, general manager of Monsanto's biotechnology research center in Beijing.
"We are excited at this opportunity to build a closer relationship with Prof Zhang and his team and be a valued partner in scientific research in China," McLean said.