Workshop 6. Biosafety of RNAi Applications for Plant Protection
Organizers: Salvatore Arpaia, Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), Italy; Antje Dietz-Pfeilstetter, Julius Kuehn-Institut (JKI), Germany and Jeremy Sweet, JTEC Ltd., United Kingdom

Workshop organised by the COST Action CA15223 (iPLANTA, iplanta.univpm.it/)

Gene silencing targeting pests and diseases is being developed for plant protection via host induced gene silencing (HIGS) and topical applications such as spray induced gene silencing (SIGS). These new biotech applications can provide targeted approaches to managing pests and diseases and thus contribute to the development of sustainable and integrated management systems. In this workshop new developments will be discussed for arthropod pest, fungal and viral pathogen control including the methods of dsRNA production, applications and the biosafety issues they raise. The data requirements for risk assessments of both SIGS and HIGS will be considered including modes of action, routes of exposure, mobility and persistence of dsRNA, specificity, possible off-target and non-target effects and resistance development. Examples of the biosafety considerations for some different potential applications will be presented and discussed.
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