Newton Fund - Development of pearl millet hybrid seeds and novel food products: An affordable resource in the prevention of Type 2 diabetes.


The number of (type 2) mainly non-insulin dependent diabetics in India is currently estimated at 65 million and rising. Pearl millet is a sustainable cereal with superior glycaemic control over wheat and rice, with a high consumer acceptance in India due to its use in traditional foods. This project will use unusual varieties of pearl millet identified from seed banks in India that have properties associated with improved glycaemic control. These will be incorporated into breeding programmes to develop pearl millet cultivars that will be optimised for both agricultural sustainablity and glycaemic control, which will then be developed into palatable and affordable food products for the Indian market. These lines will be made available as both improved food crops for direct growth and consumption by smallholder farmers and also as a valuable raw material for products that, when consumed regularly, will help to prevent the development of insulin resistance.

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Unilever U.K. Central Resources Limited, Bedford


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