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Biosafety Expert
Record information and status
Record ID
101772
Status
Published
Date of creation
2011-04-10 01:28 UTC (manoela.miranda@cbd.int)
Date of last update
2017-07-24 19:57 UTC (dina.abdelhakim@cbd.int)
Date of publication
2017-07-24 19:57 UTC (dina.abdelhakim@cbd.int)

General information
Profile of the Expert
Dr. MM Roca has an BSc. in microbiology  from King´s College London and a PhD. in plant pathology from University College London,  with a specialization in virology.

Dr. Roca  worked in agriculture (1992 -  2010) in Mauritius, Mexico, Bolivia, and Honduras developing and managing projects in Integrated Pest Management with small farmers. While at Zamorano University in Honduras  (1998- 2014) she developed courses in plant pathology,  agricultural biotechnology and environmental biotechnology. She was one of the founding members of the National  Biotechnology and Biosafety Committee of Honduras (CNBB for its Spanish acronym) and advises the Honduran Government.  The CNBB reviews submission for risk assessment of GMOs and advices the Honduran Government. In 2003 the Honduran Government authorized the first commercial planting of GM maize.

She has worked extensively on  developing and implemnting training courses in risk assessment and risk management for Central American regulators.  
Personal Information
Coordinates
Dr. Maria Mercedes Roca
341 San Arturo Oriente, Valle Real
Guadalajara, Jalisco
Mexico, 45019
Phone:52 33 1371 3594
Fax:52 33 1371 3594
Email:mmroca@itesm.mx,prof.mariamercedesroca@gmail.com
Url:http://www.gda.itesm.mx
Gender
  • Female
Nationalities
  • Bolivian
  • British
Date of birth
1964
Place of birth
Colombia
Current employment
Employer / Organization
Tecnologico de Monterrey Campus Guadalajara
Acronym
Tec Monterrey
Type of organization
  • Academic or research institute
Department / Division / Unit
School of Medicine, Biotechnolology Division
Start date
2014
Main responsibilities
Teaching and  research for a two year period with the program for "Foreign Visiting Professor"

Research: conducts research on plant pathogens of crops. Has sound  knowledge of molecular biology and genetic engeneering.

Extension: works closely with subsistance farmers on Integrated Pest Management projects
Employment history
Countries or regions where you have worked
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Colombia
  • Bolivia (Plurinational State of)
  • Mexico
  • Honduras
  • Mauritius
Previous employment
Employer / Organization
Zamorano University, Honduras
Acronym
Zamorano
Type of organization
  • Academic or research institute
Main areas of responsibility
Teaching, research, policy
Previous employment
Employer / Organization
Rothamsted Research, UK
Acronym
Rothamsted
Type of organization
  • Academic or research institute
Main areas of responsibility
Post - Doc. Research in plant Virology
Previous employment
Employer / Organization
Mauritius Sugar Industry Research Institute
Acronym
MSIRI
Start date
1987
Ending date
1991
Type of organization
  • Academic or research institute
Main areas of responsibility
Agricultural research
Formal education
First Degree or other academic distinction and subject
Example: B.Sc. in Microbiology
BSc. (Hons)  in Microbiology
Name of academic institution
Kings College London, UK
Start date
1984
Ending date
1987
Formal education
Second Degree or other academic distinction and the subject
Example: M.Sc. in Microbiology
PhD.  in Plant Pathology
Name of academic institution
Senate House, University College London, UK
Start date
1988
Ending date
1992
Other professional qualifications
List of other relevant professional qualifications
Diploma in Risk Analysis, USDA, USA, 2009
Diploma in Teaching for University Professors, Texas A & M, USA, 2009
Diploma in Biosafety of Biotechnology, Brazil, 2008
Areas of Expertise
Main areas of expertise
  • Food and feed safety
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk management
  • Molecular biology
  • Biotechnology
  • Pest management
  • Virus resistance
Publications
List most important publications related to the expert main field of expertise.
Paes Andrade, Paulo; Parrot, Wayne; Roca,  Maria Mercedes.  Guía para la Evaluación de Riesgo Ambiental de Organismos Genéticamente Modificados. Published by  ILSI, Brazil,  2012 (140 p). 
Roca, Maria Mercedes. Development of Biosafety Regulatory Systems  under the Cartagena Protocol in Central America. Proceedings of the   12th International Symposium of Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms  (ISBGMO12), St. Louis, Missouri, September,  2012.  d. http://www.isbgmo.com/
Roca, MM; McDowell R.  2013. An overview of palm diseases and their management in Central America and the Caribbean. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Phytopathological Society, Austin Texas, 12-15 August 2013.
List of other publications
Roca, Maria Mercedes, Keese, Paul. Challenges on developing biosafety systmems in Latin American Countries. Presented at the 2nd Worl Congress on Risk 2012: Risk and Development in a Changing World, Syndney, Australia, 2012
Roca, Maria Mercedes, McDowell Robert: Risk assessment of new technologies: Bridging the regulatory divide between high and low income countries. Invited presenation to staff of the Risk Analyisis Unit of the Office for Gene Regulation. Government of Australia, Camberra, Australia. June 2012.
Roca, Maria Mercedes. The challenges of deploying Synthetic Biology Technologies in developing Countries.  Invited policy paper. In 21st Century Borders/Synthetic Biology: Focus on responsibility and governance. Institute on science for Global Policy. Proceedings of Conference convened by the ISGP, Tucson, Arizona Dec.2012.
Roca, Maria Mercedes. The challenges of deploying Synthetic Biology Technologies in developing Countries.  Invited policy paper. In 21st Century Borders/Synthetic Biology: Focus on responsibility and governance. Institute on science for Global Policy. Proceedings of Conference convened by the ISGP, Tucson, Arizona Dec.2012
Roca, Maria Mercedes. The challenges of deploying Synthetic Biology Technologies in Developing Countries.  Invited policy paper. In 21st Century Borders/Synthetic Biology: Focus on responsibility and governance. Institute on science for Global Policy. Proceedings of Conference convened by the ISGP, Tucson, Arizona Dec.2012.  l. http://www.scienceforglobalpolicy.org/Conferences/21stCenturyBordersSyntheticBiology/tabid/158/Default.aspx
Roca,  Maria Mercedes.  Risk Assessment in agriculture. Experiences of GM maiz in Honduras. Proceedings of the Workshop on Biosafety and Risk Analysis for Andean and Central American Countries" (English version).  IICA Iinteramerican Institute of Agricultural Cooperation). San Jose, Costa Rica, March 2013.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Awards received
Award for oustanding service by the American Phytopathological Society (APS)  and member of the Executive Board  of the APS, 2009-2011
Invited by Minisiter of Environment, Rigoberto Cuellar, to participate in the Honduran delegation,  as an agricultural expert, to the UN Summit on Sustianable Development, Rio + 20 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, June 2012.  
Award from Minisiterof Agriculture, Jacobo Regalado, for outstanding service to the Government of Honduras as a founding and active member of the National Committee for Biosafety and Biotechnology.  May 2012
Professional memberships
American Phytopathological Society
Latin American Network for Biotechnology REDBIO.  Starting Latin American Society for Synthetic Biololgy
National Committee of Biosafety and Biotechnology, Honduras
Technical committees, expert panels or advisory bodies served
AHTEG Risk Assessment and Risk Management, CBD, Honduraa representative. Participates actively on line for a and on MOPs (whenever possible)
Zamorano University Biosafey Committee, advices Honduran  Government on Biosafety Policy for GMOs
ICCAB, Iniciativa centroamerican de Biotechnología y Bioseguridad, Advices Central American Governments on biosafety and biotechnology Policy. Training of country biotechnology regulators on risk assessment and risk management.
Language proficiency
"A" = Excellent, "B" = Good, "C" = Fair
Mother Tongue
  • English
  • Spanish
References
References
Dr. Carlos Alberto Almendares
Jefe Departamento de Certificacion de Semillas (CERTISEM)
Certificacion de semillas
Secretaria de Agricultura y Ganaderia / SENASA
Colonia Loma Linda Norte, Avenida la FAO.
Tegucigalpa
Honduras
Phone:+(504)22397270
Email:calmendarez@senasa-sag.gob.hn
Key Professional References
Dr. Victor Villalobos, Director General IICA,  (Instituto Interamericano de Cooperacion Agricola), Costa Rica, victor.villalobos@iica.int, www. iiica. org