The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation recently announced that it has awarded a $12.4 million grant to North Carolina State University to develop genomic tools for the improvement of the sweet potato, which is an important staple in several African countries. The grant provides funding for genomic and bioinformatics tool development, as well as new data to help improve drought and pest resistance. Led by principal investigator Dr. Craig Yencho in the NCSU Department of Horticulture, the NCSU team includes BRC researchers Drs. Zhao-Bang Zeng and Dahlia Nielsen, and other investigators at NCSU and several partner universities.
The grant draws on the wide range of expertise in statistical genetics and bioinformatics at NCSU. Dr. Zeng’s group will develop tools in for mapping important traits, while Dr. Nielsen will oversee transcriptomic assembly and related bioinformatics development.
See the full news release [http://news.ncsu.edu/2014/09/nc-state-receives-sweet-potato-grant/] for more details.