Genomic scientists will be one step closer to understanding diseases like Kauri dieback and pest animal species thanks to a $35 million investment in research.
Science and Innovation Minister Paul Goldsmith was in Christchurch on Friday to announce that $35m will be invested over seven years in Genomics Aotearoa, a new collaborative science organisation supporting advanced genomics research.
Mr Goldsmith says the new platform will accelerate genomics research in New Zealand, and thereby speed up scientists' understanding of diseases caused by pests and medical treatments for conditions such as cancer.
Genomics involves data-intensive computing to decode the DNA of plants, animals, and humans to understand how groups of genes interact with each other and the external environment.
"Genomics is a fast-moving, data intensive research field that underpins a wide range of science that is increasingly important to New Zealand," Mr Goldsmith said.
"This new collaborative platform presents a major opportunity for New Zealand to be at the forefront of genomics. From health research to the primary sector and our environment, there are considerable social and economic gains on offer," Mr Goldsmith said.
Genomics Aotearoa will be led by the University of Otago and is an alliance between the Universities of Auckland and Massey, along with a further 30 organisations.