Friday, August 24, 2012
DroughtGardTM maize will be the first commercially available transgenic (GM) drought tolerant crop if it's released in 2013 as planned. Hybrid seed sold under this trademark will combine a novel transgenic trait (based on the bacterial cspB gene) with the best of Monsanto's conventional breeding program.
The Union of Concerned Scientists threw their usual wet blanket on the development. I think their gloomy assessment of transgenic drought tolerance is pretty biased but they do make a few good points that the public should understand. Primarily, "drought tolerance" does not mean that these plants can be grown with little to no water.