Biotech crops: technologies, achievements and prospects
During the past decade the development and adoption of transgenic technology has progressed rapidly. In 2007, biotech crops were grown by 12 million farmers in 23 countries covering 114.3 million hectares. This progress can be attributed to developments in molecular genetics, plant transformation and regeneration techniques and a better understanding of the underlying processes involved in DNA recombination. While almost every significant crop species has been successfully transformed, in many species the development of rapid, highly efficient, and routine transformation systems is still in progress. The commonly-used methods along with some promising alternative methods of plant transformation are described here. Achievements and future prospect in the areas of developing biotic and abiotic stress-tolerant crop varieties and progress in incorporating nutritional and other useful qualities into plants are also discussed in this paper.