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Recent Patents on Biotechnology


ISSN (Print): 1872-2083
ISSN (Online): 2212-4012

Plant Biotechnology Patents: Applications in Agriculture and Medicine

Author(s): Kathleen L. Hefferon

Volume 4, Issue 2, 2010

Page: [136 - 152] Pages: 17

DOI: 10.2174/187220810791110723

Price: $65


Recent advances in agricultural biotechnology have enabled the field of plant biology to move forward in great leaps and bounds. In particular, recent breakthroughs in molecular biology, plant genomics and crop science have brought about a paradigm shift of thought regarding the manner by which plants can be utilized both in agriculture and in medicine. Besides the more well known improvements in agronomic traits of crops such as disease resistance and drought tolerance, plants can now be associated with topics as diverse as biofuel production, phytoremediation, the improvement of nutritional qualities in edible plants, the identification of compounds for medicinal purposes in plants and the use of plants as therapeutic protein production platforms. This diversification of plant science has been accompanied by the great abundance of new patents issued in these fields and, as many of these inventions approach commercial realization, the subsequent increase in agriculturally-based industries. While this review chapter is written primarily for plant scientists who have great interest in the new directions being taken with respect to applications in agricultural biotechnology, those in other disciplines, such as medical researchers, environmental scientists and engineers, may find significant value in reading this article as well. The review attempts to provide an overview of the most recent patents issued for plant biotechnology with respect to both agriculture and medicine. The chapter concludes with the proposal that the combined driving forces of climate change, as well as the ever increasing needs for clean energy and food security will play a pivotal role in leading the direction for applied plant biotechnology research in the future.

Keywords: Plant biotechnology, transgenic plant, phytoremediation, biofuel, drought tolerance, pathogen resistance, edible vaccine, nutraceutical

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