Keep enjoying your morning coffee: Research can maintain healthy beans in times of climate change

MARCO CRISTANCHO – Scientific Director, Centre for Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Parque los Yarumos, Manizales, Caldas, Colombia Author
07/03/2016 Added
152 Plays


DERMOT P. COYNE DISTINGUISHED LECTURESHIP Climate change has caused major reductions in coffee production due to increased incidence of insect pests and diseases, as well as abiotic stresses that are threatening sustainable coffee production around the world. In Latin America, the coffee leaf rust epidemic has caused more than $1 billion in losses. Coffee leaf rust between 2012 and 2014 caused over 50 percent reduction in production in Central America, affecting more than 5 million people. Recent research has focused on de novo sequencing and assembly of the coffee genome. Marco Cristancho will discuss how they have sequenced the genome of orange rust Hemileia vastatrix in order to understand the molecular mechanisms used by this fungus to attack the coffee plant and how this pathogen adapts to a variable climate. What appropriate actions need to be taken in the near future to address the impact of climate change on coffee sustainability? These issues will be addressed in the context of the latest developments by different coffee research groups. The implications of additional research investments needed in order to save your morning cup of coffee will also be discussed.

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