Syngenta Biotechnology founder and Distinguished Science Fellow Mary-Dell Chilton received the 2013 World Food Prize along with two other scientists. In a release, the Company noted the
Chilton was named a laureate in June at a ceremony at the
"Being named a World Food Prize laureate is not only a personal honor for me, it is a recognition that biotechnology is making an extremely valuable contribution to agriculture," said Chilton. "Also, this is further proof that women are being recognized for their contributions to science and innovation. I hope that school- age girls around the world will be encouraged by this to pursue science and know that their achievements can be important contributors to society."
Chilton's work has led to the development of a number of genetically-enhanced crops, which, by 2012, were grown on more than 420 million acres around the globe by more than 17 million farmers, over 90 percent of whom were small, resource-poor farmers in developing countries.
Michiel van Lookeren Campagne, head of Biotechnology for
Chilton conducted molecular research on how a plant bacterium can be adapted as a tool to insert genes from other organisms into plant cells, which can regenerate plants enabling plant breeders to produce crop varieties with new innovative traits. In 1982, Chilton and her team harnessed the gene-transfer mechanism of the bacterium, Agrobacterium, to produce the first transgenic plant.
Chilton said, "For centuries, those in agriculture have worked to do by choice what nature could only do by chance. With biotechnology, we are working with nature on a higher level to more precisely determine the outcome of crops. And through ongoing research we can continually improve the quality and productivity of crops. What's more, we can do this in a way that will allow future generations to provide for their needs, as well."
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Syngenta Biotechnology founder and Distinguished Science Fellow Mary-Dell Chilton received the 2013 World Food Prize along with two other scientists.
In a release, the Company noted the