IITA News

Scientists show which genetic loci is associated with bunch weight in highland banana

Scientists have, for the first time, located the position of major quantitative trait loci associated with bunch weight and its component traits in Matooke, the East African Highland cooking banana. This is an important breakthrough in efforts to speed up breeding of improved high-yielding varieties for both food security and improved household incomes in the…

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IITA working on Africa’s first genome edited banana

IITA working on Africa’s first genome edited banana

The new frontier for agricultural innovation is genome editing and IITA is already leading the way by using the technology to improve several crops. Principal Scientist and Deputy Director of IITA East Africa Hub, Dr Leena Tripathi revealed this during the Third Africa Biennial Biosciences Communication Symposium (ABBC), which took place in Pretoria South Africa,…

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Another PhD for the Breeding Better Banana project as Michael Batte successfully defends his thesis

Another PhD for the Breeding Better Banana project as Michael Batte successfully defends his thesis

Michael Batte successfully defended his PhD thesis titled Increasing efficiency of the breeding pipeline for East African highland bananas on 4 June at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) Alnarp campus. His studies were sponsored by the Breeding Better Banana project that is led by IITA as part of its capacity building program. This…

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IITA scientists and partners screen up to 189 types of banana for provitamin A

IITA scientists and partners screen up to 189 types of banana for provitamin A

R4D Special Scientists have finalized the mammoth task of screening up to 189 banana genotypes to identify those with high levels of provitamin A for integration into IITA’s banana improvement program as part of ongoing efforts to develop banana hybrids with enhanced vitamin A. The fat-soluble vitamin A is essential for vision, reproduction, growth, and…

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Brigitte Uwimana, IITA Scientist planting a sucker.

Interview with Brigitte Uwimana, Banana Molecular Breeder

Brigitte Uwimana is IITA Banana Molecular Breeder from Rwandan based in Uganda. In this interview, she shares some of her experiences working as a researcher. Q: As an upcoming young female scientist at IITA, did you always want to do science? A: Science has fascinated me for as long as I can remember. I always…

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Dr Leena Tripathi, IITA Principal Scientist observing her crop yield.

One on one with Dr Leena Tripathi, IITA’s Biotech superstar!

Dr Leena Tripathi is Principal Scientist and Deputy Director for IITA Eastern Africa Hub based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is also head of IITA’s Plant Transformation Research and, in this interview, reveals what makes her tick and her inspiration for being a scientist. Q: Tell us about how you were as a kid. A: (Laughing) I…

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Picture of Delphine Amah, IITA Regional Plantain breeder, addressing the trainees.

Staff from Nigeria’s premier horticultural research institute receive training on plantain and banana production

As part of efforts to build the capacity of national research systems, IITA scientists provided a 2-week training from 10 to 21 September for 10 scientists and technical staff of the National Horticultural Research Institute (NIHORT).

Picture of Banana Breeder Allan Brown in a discussion with members of the research team.

Journey to a better “Mchare”

“Mchare” is an important cooking banana in Tanzania and parts of Eastern Africa.

Picture of Stump of infected banana tree. Source: Viljoen, 2018.

FAO and partners combat Banana Fusarium Disease

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) met with partners at the ProMusa International Banana Symposium that took place at the International Horticulture Congress in Istanbul.

Picture of Moses Nyine (second from left), who received his PhD from Palacky University Olomouc in the Czech Republic, with his IITA supervisors

IITA capacity building on banana and cassava breeding helps three students graduate

Recently, three students supported by IITA’s breeding program graduated—two with the banana breeding program and one with cassava molecular breeding team.

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