Current Topic - Soybean Homecoming (13-04-2013 to 03-09-2013)
Soybean was first domesticated in China about 3,000 years ago. After being introduced to the United States in the 18th Century, it has been developed into an important cash crop worldwide due to its high nutritional and health value. Nonetheless, it also becomes one of the 'food crises' in its homeland, China. Owing to insufficient self-supply, China spends tens of billions of US dollars each year to import soybean (more than half of total global export). To expedite soybean research and breeding in China, scientists in Hong Kong, in collaboration with researchers in Shenzhen, have launched a large-scale soybean genomic project. They use the advanced deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequencing technology to demonstrate the biodiversity in wild soybeans and uncover useful genomic information therein. The ultimate goal is to strengthen the research on and sustainable cultivation of soybean in its 'home', China."