Since 2006, Labex-USA has appointed and sent Brazilian scientists specializing in genetic resources to the U.S. to promote the exchange of germplasm between the two countries as well as develop collaborative efforts in the areas of cryopreservation, data information systems for genetic resources, and characterization of plant, microbes and animal genetic resources. Important outcomes from this collaboration have included: exchange of more than 15,000 plant accessions; training of more than ten research scientists and graduate students in cryopreservation and genetic characterization techniques. Guidelines were also jointly development developed for conservation of animal genetic resources for FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations). Notably, this partnership facilitated collaboration among U.S., Canada, and Brazil in developing a new animal genetic resources data information system. The U.S. is one of the main providers of germplasm imported by Brazil over the last 30 years and we believe that the collaboration efforts between NCGRP and Embrapa will establish and maintain the exchange of genetic resources between both countries.
Dr. Samuel Rezende Paiva, Research Scientist from Brazil is the local coordinator for the Embrapa LABEX/US Program for genetic resources at NCGRP. Dr. Paiva is responsible for fostering collaboration between ARS and Embrapa research centers as well as Land Grant Universities in plant, animal and microbial genetic resource research and exchange. His research during his time here in Fort Collins will be focused in incorporation of genomic data in genetic resource databases, integration of molecular and GIS data as a tool to manage gene banks and development of molecular marker panels to optimize genetic characterization of U.S. and Brazil germplasm.
The Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation, Embrapa and the USDA, Agricultural Research Service initiated an agreement in 1998 creating a 'Virtual Laboratory Abroad' with the objective of developing opportunities for agricultural research cooperation between Brazil and the U.S. (http://embrapa-labex-usa.com/index.php). Embrapa Labex-USA is a trust fund cooperative agreement managed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service - Office of International Research Programs (USDA-ARS / OIRP) with funds provided by the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation - Embrapa to support the 'virtual laboratory' with ARS and Land-Grant Universities. ARS laboratories host senior Embrapa scientists for long-term periods (2 or more years), allowing them to collaborate on mutually beneficial areas of research such as food safety, nanotechnology, genetic resources, bioenergy, bioinformatics, animal health, forestry management, climate change, natural resources as well as issues involving the operations of research agencies such as innovation, intellectual property rights, and communication.