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$260,000 supports research into parasitic plants that attack conifers


Kamloops, BC – Funding of $260,000 is being provided by BC’s provincial government to further research at Thompson Rivers University into parasitic plants that attack coniferous forests in the province.

The funding will be used to acquire an advanced scanning electron microscope for research dedicated to controlling dwarf mistletoe, a plant parasite that infects trees and in the case of lodgepole pine, makes the trees more susceptible to pine beetle infestations.

“We’re pleased with this announcement since it demonstrates the BC government’s ongoing commitment to forestry research,” said John Allan, president of Council of Forest Industries.

The BCKDF announcement matched funding from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation and is added to other internal and external sources at TRU for a total research infrastructure investment of $666,333 for the purchase of a state-of- the-art scanning electron microscope or SEM.

“This advanced microscope will be used by internationally renowned scientist Dr Cynthia Ross Friedman and TRU students engaged in original research with the potential to lead to innovative practices and solutions for good forest management and pest control,” said Alan Shaver, TRU president and vice-chancellor. “In addition to her research on forest health, the detailed study of mistletoe and other plants continues to lead to the discovery of new medicines and bioproducts that may eventually become new commercial products contributing to the economy of British Columbia.”