DARPA Sets Insect Allies Proposers Day

The program seeks to develop vector-mediated modification technologies for mature plants to rapidly counter environmental and biological threats to crops. Threats of interest may include pathogens, pests, drought, and salinity.

DARPA has announced that its Biological Technologies Office is hosting a Proposers Day meeting on Nov. 18 to provide information to potential applicants on the structure and objectives of the new Insect Allies program.

The program seeks to develop vector-mediated modification technologies for mature plants to rapidly counter environmental and biological threats to crops. Threats of interest may include pathogens, pests, drought, and salinity, according to the DARPA notice, which says the agency "believes the high specificity of genetic modification coupled with quick plant gene uptake could allow crops to be protected from threats within a single growing season."

The Proposers Day will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Eastern time; participants can attend in person or via a webinar, and advance registration is required. Register at this site.

Registration closes on Nov. 14 at noon Eastern or when capacity is reached, whichever comes first. DARPA hosts Proposers Days to provide potential performers with information on whether and how they would respond to government R&D solicitations.

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