In October the Nobel Committee awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier from the Max Planck Unit for the Science of Pathogens in Berlin, Germany, and Dr. Jennifer A. Doudna of the University of California, Berkeley. The pair developed a method for genome editing, commonly known as CRISPR.
Currently used worldwide, CRISPR is used by scientists technology to edit the DNA of plants, including soybeans, with extreme precision. These “molecular scissors” are helping develop new cultivars with higher yields, the ability to withstand pests and drought and many other beneficial properties.
The soybean checkoff currently supports a significant number of research projects using this technology, including developing new research tools in understanding gene function. Eventually, the new technology will result in improved soybean cultivars for U.S. farmers. The United Soybean Board congratulates Drs. Charpentier and Doudna on their award and thanks them for enabling our cutting-edge research. Read more about current USB projects using these technologies here. For more information, please contact Lisa Balbes.