Zim Piloting Application Of Genome Editing

Zimbabwe has been selected alongside countries such as Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Mozambique, Kenya and Malawi to pilot the application of genome editing research toward product development.Gene editing technology allows scientists to edit any gene they target, enabling them to find and change or replace genetic defects.A workshop was held in the capital with experts contributing to this innovation thinking.

The innovation of Gene-editing science and technology is in its virgin stages in Zimbabwe and most African countries with the potential of this technology yet to be harnessed.

Dr Bongani Nkhabindze, AUDA-NEPAD programmes officer praised Zimbabwean scientists for working extra hard to come up with a robust module for use in local universities and institutions.

While addressing participants at a workshop to validate a Genome Editing (Ged) Science Module course for local universities and research institutions, the Programs Officer said:

“The good working spirit shown in this meeting is highly commendable. We had very robust group work and suggestions. This gives justice to the actual module which will not be used in Zimbabwe alone, but throughout Africa,” he said.

“The work should help consolidate the module to be published and used. I really commend the spirit and effort made on this.”

African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD), the Scientific and Industrial Research and Development Centre (SIRDC), and National Biotechnology Authority organised the workshop to help strengthen the capacity of local universities and colleges to adopt gene editing as a tool to optimise the country’s agricultural sector.

Zimbabwe’s scientific experts were meeting this week to review gene editing modules before they are published and adopted in institutions of higher learning, also introducing university lecturers to four carefully crafted modules that have been developed by experts at AUDA-NEPAD.

These modules were designed to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date understanding of genome editing, covering both the scientific principles and the ethical considerations surrounding this cutting-edge technology.

Ross Moyo

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