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SASHA Brief 2016: Weevil resistant sweetpotato through biotechnology

Weevils damage about a quarter of the sweetpotato harvest in Uganda and induce the accumulation of toxic compounds in the healthy-looking parts of damaged storage roots. We have introduced new genes that produce anti-weevil proteins in the sweetpotato storage root through biotechnology. We may have found few with some resistance to weevils. In parallel, we are testing a new strategy to weaken specific genes of the weevils to block their development. These two strategies will eventually be combined into widely-cultivated sweetpotato varieties in SSA. This flyer summarizes  the progress made between 2015 and 2016.