Zhang Yaping (third from right) accompanies Mark Field (third from left) on a laboratory visit. [Image from the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, CAS]

Mark Field, Minister of State for Asia and the Pacific Affairs at the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, visited the CAS-JIC Centre of Excellence for Plant and Microbial Science (CEPAMS) on July 22.

Zhang Yaping, vice-president of CAS, briefed the Minister on CAS and the technological cooperation strategy between CAS and the UK. Zhang hoped that the Minister's visit will further the mutual understanding of China and the UK and promote cooperation between scientific circles in the two countries. The Minister was also briefed by CAS academicians and was introduced to CEPAMS by its Chinese director Cao Xiaofeng. He then visited some of the center’s laboratories.

The center was jointly built by CAS’ Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, its Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institute for Biological Sciences (SIBS), and the John Innes Centre, which was CAS’ first international joint research center for research on crop improvement and natural products. Its key research areas include the theory and application of crop improvement and breeding, and the metabolic mechanisms of plants and microorganisms in natural products.

The Minister highly evaluated the golden era of Sino-British relationship and stressed the importance of technology and innovation. “CEPAMS is a good example of Sino-British scientific cooperation. I believe that CEPAMS can improve the lives of people in China, the UK and the world by its work in food safety and health care," he said.

At present, CEPAMS has launched 22 cooperative projects. It is home to 37 scientists and has won a Newton Advanced Fellowship. It has published 15 cooperative papers in the international journals Science Advances, PNAS and Molecular Plant.


Source: Bureau of International Co-operation, CAS

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