A key to the successful outcomes of the Genomics R&D Initiative has been to ensure Canadian researchers have the tools they need to explore the almost infinite potential of genomics to enhance the health, safety and economic well-being of Canadians.
For every insect that can damage or destroy a food crop, there can be hundreds of others that look just like it. The ability to tell them apart quickly and accurately can be worth millions of dollars. Strawberry growers in Nova Scotia trying to deal with a destructive complex of viruses carried by aphids are already benefitting from research funded through the Genomics R&D Initiative.
Supported by the Genomics R&D Initiative, federal researchers have demonstrated how a specimen collected in the 19th century can have a 21st century application, helping to identify plant pests and pathogens quickly and accurately.
Genomics research capacity developed with funding from the Genomics R&D Initiative played a key role in protecting Prince Edward Island's potato industry after potato wart disease was detected there in 2000, leading the U.S. to impose an immediate ban on potatoes from PEI.
Canadian soybean growers owe some thanks to the Genomics R&D Initiative for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) decision to lift regulations aimed at preventing the spread of soybean cyst nematode.
Research funded through the Genomics R&D Initiative is helping to protect millions of dollars in profits on Canada's yellow pea exports to India.
With funding from the Genomics R&D Initiative, researchers at six federal departments have extracted DNA from thousands of specimens of a wide range of organisms collected over many decades. This capacity is essential to take advantage of the speed and accuracy of genomics-based testing to identify pests and pathogens that can endanger our health, safety and economy.
Research funded through the Genomics R&D Initiative has confirmed that potentially invasive species can travel to Canada via sea-borne debris.
With funding from the Genomics R&D Initiative, researchers at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency have demonstrated how genomics can increase the speed and lower the cost of innovation in Canada's fruit industry, a business worth more than $900 million annually.