IITA News

Picture of Latifa Mrisho, A PhD student at IITA, giving a presentation on the app to potential partners in Tanzania

Exploring partnership to get AI app for disease diagnostics into farmers’ hands

“Nuru,” a Swahili word meaning “light”, is a smartphone app that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to diagnose, in real time, crop pests and diseases. It was developed by Pennsylvania State University (PSU), USA, in partnership with the plant pathology team at IITA-Tanzania led by James Legg. The app is able to…

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Picture of cassava plantlets.

CBSD Control Project in Rwanda and Burundi commended by partners

The IITA-led project to control Cassava Brown Streak Disease (CBSD) and Cassava Mosaic Disease (CMD) held its first Annual Review and Planning workshop in Bujumbura, Burundi and Kigali, Rwanda between 19 and 23 March.

Picture of brown streak disease in cassava.

R4D Special: Spirited effort by IITA team to manage the viruses destroying cassava in Africa

From convincing communities to uproot all their cassava to replace with new clean planting materials, piloting a commercial system to supply disease-free planting materials, to developing new rapid methods to diagnose the viruses, the IITA Vector Entomology team in Eastern Africa has certainly been busy exploring all options to save the cassava in Eastern and parts of Central Africa.

Picture of workshop participants.

CBSD control project for Rwanda and Burundi launched

IITA in partnership with the Institute of Agricultural Science of Burundi (ISABU) and Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB) have launched a new project titled “Fighting Cassava Brown Streak Disease (CBSD) and Cassava Mosaic Disease (CMD) through the deployment of new resistant germplasm and clean seed in Rwanda and Burundi”.

Controlling the twin viral cassava diseases in East Africa through breeding—major victories, but fight is far from over

Cassava farmers in Eastern Africa have been watching in despair as two viral diseases―cassava brown streak disease (CBSD) and cassava mosaic disease (CMD)―ravage their valuable crop. Edward Kanju, IITA cassava breeder based in Tanzania, has spent the last 11 years at the Institute leading regional efforts to develop improved cassava varieties with tolerance or resistance…

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Picture of Dr Brigitte Uwimana explaining to Members of Parliament where and how banana seeds used in breeding are extracted.

IITA holds Science day to kick off silver and golden jubilee celebrations in Uganda

On 27 October, IITA Uganda marked its 25th year of supporting smallholder farmers growing banana, cassava, maize, coffee, cowpea, cocoa, soybean, and yams to increase their agricultural production; and hosted family and friends of the Institute at a one-day “Science Day” to celebrate the feat. The event which promoted IITA’s research activities had the theme…

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Picture of Clean Seed to Combat CBSD and CMD Project (5CP) team visiting the trials in Tanzania.

Landmark regional crop breeding trials show promise against deadly cassava viral diseases

Disease resistance trials being conducted simultaneously in 33 different locations across 5 African countries and involving 25 shared varieties – a first-of-its-kind multi-country collaborative cassava breeding initiative in East and Southern Africa – are showing promise against the deadly Cassava Brown Streak Disease (CBSD) and Cassava Mosaic Disease (CMD). This was highlighted during a stakeholders’…

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Picture of large population of B. tabaci adults feeding on the underside of a young cassava leaf

Researchers on one of the world’s most destructive agricultural pests, whitefly, converge in Arusha, Tanzania

The 2nd International Whitefly Symposium (IWS2) is taking place in Arusha, Tanzania, this week, 14-19 February. It has brought together more than a hundred scientists from all over the world to discuss one of the world’s most destructive agricultural pests, the whitefly. In sub-Saharan Africa, whiteflies are a key threat to food security and efforts…

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