SYMP 1-6 - CANCELLED - Assessing risks of invasion by hybrid and GMO plant species

Monday, August 8, 2011: 3:35 PM
Ballroom E, Austin Convention Center
Doria R. Gordon, The Nature Conservancy, Gainesville, FL

Multiple risks and benefits are associated with plant breeding and genetic engineering efforts that result in hybrids, transgenic species, and similar taxa. One type of risk is that the novel taxon itself, or related taxa with which it might interbreed, might become invasive beyond cultivation and threaten native species and systems. I review the utility of a weed risk assessment system for identifying the probability that a new taxon derived from one or more non-native parents might become invasive, incorporating examples of biofuel and other agricultural species.


The potential for increasing or causing invasiveness needs to be assessed for each taxon individually, and may depend on the cultivation context. For newly developed taxa, insufficient data on field characteristics will require the majority of data for the assessment to be based on characteristics of the parent species. However, using a predictive screening system may both suggest molecular and management approaches for reducing the risk of invasion by these novel taxa.

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