In 2019, the CRAG has participated for the first time in the Barcelona International Youth Science Challenge (BIYSC), an international excellence programme coordinated by Catalunya-La Pedrera Foundation that aims to stimulate scientific talent among young people from all over the world, and to encourage their enthusiasm for pursuing scientific research and careers in science.
How can 21st century plant scientists help breeders and farmers obtain more productive crops that, at the same time, are adapted to a changing environment? For two weeks, 9 students between 16 and 18 years old have carried out the research project Genetic approaches for a sustainable food production offered by CRAG with the aim of answering this question through genomics research.
In this challenge, the participants have had the opportunity to delve into plant genetic breeding, studying the DNA of horticultural species in depth, using molecular biology, genomics and bioinformatics techniques, as well as cutting-edge technologies for genome editing.
This project has been developed by IRTA researchers at CRAG Ana Montserrat Martín-Hernández, Marta Pujol, Marta Riera and Irma Roig, and by CRAG researchers Andrea Giordano, Carlos Mayobre, Núria Real and Miguel Santo Domingo.
12 Catalan research centers, including the CRAG, have participated in the BIYSC, hosting a total of 104 students from all over the world.