Su-May Yu is a molecular plant biologist who is working to reduce world hunger by improving rice yields. In 1993, Yu conducted the world’s first genetic colonization of agrobacterium into rice sapling, and successfully produced protein through the saplings. This method was considered a major breakthrough in rice genomics, and has since been widely utilized around the world. She has also led a team of researchers and academics in establishing a Rice Insertional Mutagenesis Database, which is a valuable data for crop research and experiments.
As a celebrated research fellow at the Institute of Molecular Biology at Taiwan’s leading research institution, Academia Sinica, Yu has filed over 20 international patents on rice transformation and functional genomics research. She is also an elected member of the Academic for the Developing World, and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She has also been invited to participate in Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s C4 Rice Project to help find ways to enhance crop yield by the year 2050.