BSAS 2020 Invited Speaker Q&A: Ramiro Alberio

12 Feb 2020

Presentation title:  Animal Stem cells and the future of food production

Area of specialism:  Reproductive and Developmental Biology


What will your session focus on and what does it address?

The presentation will discuss recent technological advances in animal stem cell biology and gene editing, and how these new technologies will soon contribute to solutions to improving livestock productivity as well as offering new sources of animal proteins for human consumption. I will present data from our lab showing how new embryonic stem cells from different domestic animals can be directed to produce lab grown meat. I will also present data of how gene editing can be used for introducing precise gene modifications in livestock embryos.


What will audiences learn from attending this session?

The talk will offer the audience a view of the paradigmatic shift in our approaches to animal breeding and selection, but also a new concepts for the generation of lab grown foods using the power of cell biotechnology.


Who will benefit from attending this session?

This talk will be suitable for policy makers, scientists working in animal genetics, animal breeding companies, and food production specialists.


How can ideas talked about in the session be utilised in the agriculture and animal science sectors?

As indicated above, Ill present a vision for the future of animal breeding using gene editing, as well as food production based on use of novel cell technologies. These new principles will have transformative impact in our way of producing food, and will contribute to securing sustainable sources of high quality proteins for feeding the human population.


Besides presenting, what are you most looking forward to at this year’s Conference?

Talking to other stakeholders in the animal science/production and industry representatives. Also keen to speak with some of the other speakers.


In what ways do you see the Animal Science sector addressing the Challenge of Change?

The AS sector has a great opportunity to make tremendous contributions to addressing key current issues on environment, climate change and sustainable food production. We currently have the toolkit that will help us accelerate and enhance our ability to create new animal breeds, increase their productivity and adaptation for changing ecosystems. It is time to embrace and continue to support developments in this space so that we can provide solutions to the urgent problems of securing Food supplies for the 9 billion people that will live on Earth by 2050.