Issue Date: July 11, 2016
Monsanto strikes two gene editing deals
Discovering and developing a new crop trait can take seven years and cost more than $50 million. Monsanto has inked two deals to license gene editing technologies that it believes will provide cheaper and faster ways to deliver crop improvements. A deal with the Israeli firm TargetGene Biotechnologies will give Monsanto researchers access to RNA-guided gene-editing techniques. Monsanto also invested in the start-up. Separately, Monsanto has begun a three-year research project with Germany’s Nomad Bioscience to help Nomad develop its transient protein expression gene-editing technology. The agreement gives Monsanto the right to use Nomad’s technology for its own research, plus an option to license it for agricultural products. “Gene-editing technologies offer a way for scientists to develop site-directed integration of specific genes as well as the opportunity to enhance beneficial or remove undesired plant characteristics,” Monsanto says.
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