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A visit by Gebisa Ejeta to the BecA- ILRI Hub

Professor Gebisa Ejeta, winner of the 2009 World Food Prize, visited the BecA-ILRI Hub research facilities on 11th December 2009.
The entire ILRI campus was honored by this visit during which Professor Gebisa addressed staff members at the traditional ILRI Friday morning coffee session. After further interactions with Mr Bruce Scott and other ILRI staff members, Professor Ejeta was guided by Dr. Segenet Kelemu and Dr. Appolinaire Djikeng on a tour of the BecA-ILRI Hub laboratory facilities.

During the tour Professor Ejeta met with a number of scientists including Dr. Dan Kiambi and Dr. Santie de Villiers of ICRISAT based at ILRI Nairobi and affiliated with the BecA-ILRI Hub.   Dan and Santie discussed their work on sorghum and millet marker-assisted breeding, the introgression of Striga resistance quantitative trait locus (QTL) gene into Kenyan, Sudanese and Malian sorghum and that of Staygreen QTLs into sorghums locally adapted and preferred by Ethiopian and Kenyan farmers. Other facilities including the plant transformation lab and the biosafety level III lab were also visited and the distinguished guest was briefed on the exciting research opportunities offered by the facilities.

Professor Ejeta expressed his satisfaction for the significant work that has been achieved for the implementation of the BecA project which is now in part a fully functional shared facility for use by scientists to address issues that constrain African agricultural development.

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