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Govt invests in cancer research, vertical farm science

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Government will invest $14.4 million into transformative new scientific research programmes including cutting-edge cancer treatment and vertical farming, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods announced today.

"These investments will help us find the answers to some of our greatest challenges - cures to deadly diseases, improving food resilience, and transitioning to a lower carbon and more productive economy. This kind of research will help make New Zealand’s economy more sustainable," said Megan Woods.

"These projects demonstrate New Zealand’s growing strength in applying cutting edge technology to real-world problems. They will see companies and industry bodies partnering to perform ground-breaking research."

Four research grants were announced today. They have the potential to:

- deliver breakthrough immunotherapy treatment for that uses a patient’s own T-cells, modifying them to recognise and eradicate cancerous cells with a high degree of precision.

- develop new applications of UV light to seeds and seedlings to increase plant productivity and resilience to crop stresses such as drought or disease.

- rapidly improve the availability and quality of improved Pinus radiata tree stocks through the development of mass propagation techniques using bioreactors

- improve livestock growth and health, and reduce insecticide use, through genetically improved endophytes that live symbiotically with perennial ryegrass.

"Science and innovation are major drivers of economic growth and international competitiveness. These partnerships will see lasting benefits for New Zealand’s economy," said Megan Woods.

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