ASPB participation in AGORA aimed at strengthening agricultural research, alleviating world hunger
ROCKVILLE, MD - The American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) announced today that it is offering scientists in nearly 70 poor nations free access to its plant science journals: Plant Physiology and The Plant Cell.
ASPB is participating in Access to Global Online Research in Agriculture (AGORA), which is an initiative to provide free or low-cost access to over 400 major scientific journals in agriculture and related biological, environmental, and social sciences to public institutions in developing countries.
AGORA is led by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN). AGORA's goal is to increase the quality and effectiveness of agricultural research, education, and training in low-income countries and in turn, to improve food security. Countries on the list generally have an annual per capita income of $1,000 (U.S. currency) or less.
"Many agricultural libraries in developing countries had not received science journals for a number of years. By providing scientists in poor nations access to current scientific information, we believe scientists in these nations will be better able to help address local problems in agricultural production," Mary Lou Guerinot, President of ASPB and Professor at Dartmouth College, said. Guerinot added, "We are committed to sharing the most current knowledge in plant science to help address fundamental needs of people throughout the world for food."
ASPB's provision of free access to its journals to poor nations is part of the overall efforts of ASPB member scientists to address world needs for better nutrition through enhanced knowledge of plant biology and of food crop development. In addition to making the most current findings in plant biology available to developing world scientists, research conducted by ASPB members will help alleviate afflictions caused by nutritional deficiencies in people's diets throughout the world. For example, Guerinot's research could lead to iron-rich food crops for consumption by three billion people throughout the world afflicted with iron deficiencies. Guerinot is studying metal transport in plants and regulation of gene expression by metals with a primary focus on iron.
Plant Physiology and The Plant Cell are two of the three most frequently cited plant science journals in the world. Following is a list of the developing nations that now have free access to ASPB science journals:
Central African Republic
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Lao People's Democratic Republic
Papua New Guinea
Republic of Moldova
Sao Tome and Principe
United Republic of Tanzania
Source: Eurekalert & othersLast reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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