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Indonesian biodiversity grant, CNR toxicologist seeks to discover human health solutions in Indonesian biodiversity

October 30, 2008
University of California scientists have received a five-year, $4 million grant to study the biodiversity of fungi, bacteria, plants, insects and vertebrates on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, a southeast Asian island threatened by the loss of biodiversity in its tropical forests.

An international team of collaborators will conduct biodiversity surveys, screen microbes and plants for applications to human health and energy needs, recommend strategies to conserve endangered species, and develop and encourage local conservation. The project is organized into six associate programs -- five led by UC Davis scientists while one program, focusing on discovery of human health solutions is being led by Len Bjeldanes, professor of toxicology at CNR.

The grant is funded by the International Cooperative Biodiversity Group Program, a multi-agency program led by the National Institutes of Health with contributions from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Department of Energy, and the National Science Foundation.